Wrexham Council homepage

Advertising

Agenda item

Equality Annual Performance Report 2017-2018

To consider the report of the Lead Member for People – Youth Services and Anti-Poverty

Minutes:

The Lead Member for People – Youth Services and Anti-Poverty submitted a report (HF/119/18s) to provide the Customers Performance Resources & Governance Scrutiny Committee with details of progress during 2017-18 in implementing the Council’s Strategic Equality Plan (2016-2020), prior to its submission to the Executive Board.    In addition the committee was asked to consider including a further update during 2019 and, as part of the discussions, the Lead Member would welcome Members’ views on ways that the profile of equality and diversity can be improved and maintained within the Council’s decision-making processes.

 

The Lead Member introduced the report commenting on the importance of embedding equality across all Council departments.  The Committee were reminded that there was a legal requirement to publish and progress the Equality Annual Performance report.

 

Members considered the report and asked questions.  In debate the following matters were highlighted:

 

  • Requested that further training be provided in respect of the EIA process to ensure that all Councillors were fully engaged.  Suggested that a survey with Councillors be undertaken to establish a baseline of understanding to inform the training.  The Lead Member commented on the usefulness of the EIA toolkit in the scrutiny and decision making process. 
  • The mainstream approach across the Council to equality and diversity was essential to the delivery of the Plan.
  • Noted that community outreach was limited by resources.
  • Support to Syrian refugees – requested that a process be developed to enable the local ward member to be made aware of Syrian refugees resettling in their area.  The officer reported that this must be considered in light of Data Protection requirements.
  • Workforce equality monitoring data collection required improvement.  Noted that an online self-service option was now available to staff, however staff had the right to decline to provide the information.
  • Inequalities in relation to access to information for people without access to the internet.  Noted that the Council was committed to engaging with the public in a variety of ways.  Further information to be provided to Members outside of the meeting.
  • The need to engage with diverse communities post Brexit.  Reported that the co-ordination of plans for the local authority in readiness for the outcome of Brexit in 2019 had recently been assigned to the Head of Environment and Planning.

 

AGREED –

 

(i)       That the Committee endorses the progress to date in implementing the Strategic Equality Plan and the plans for further improvement, and will receive a further update in 12 months.

 

(ii)     That the Committee supports the work underway to plan for the outcome of Brexit in March 2019 and requests that an All Member Information Report be issued and a report be brought to the committee in March.

 

(iii)     That a survey be undertaken with Councillors to establish a baseline in terms of their understanding and use of the EIA toolkit, and that this be used to inform further member training.

 

(iv)     That the Council investigate the possibility of making local Members aware of Syrian refugees in their wards so that they can make contact with them.

 

Supporting documents: