The Borough Council is set to approve an Equality Plan this month that will outline its commitment to tacking inequality, celebrating diversity and being anti-racist.
The draft plan, due to be discussed at the council’s decision making executive meeting on March 18, sets out how the council will work with partners and residents to make sure its Community Vision, ‘to be a great place to live, learn, work and grow, and a great place to do business’, is realised for all residents.
In order to do this, the plan envisages three priorities:
- Priority 1 - Listen to and learn from our communities and use this to deliver services that work well for everyone
- Priority 2 - Act on our commitments to equality, diversity and inclusion in the way we plan, deliver and shape our services
- Priority 3 - Build a diverse and engaged workforce, where everyone is respected
The draft plan has been produced following consultation with residents and stakeholders and this engagement would continue as it is put into action.
Leader of the council John Halsall said: “Wokingham borough frequently does very well in quality of life surveys, recently even being named the healthiest place to live in England, but we know that not everybody shares equally in the benefits of living here, and we are committed to tackling that issue. Inequality can be suffered for a whole range of reasons – age, gender, sexuality, race and disability among others – but it is never acceptable and I believe the draft plan we have is a comprehensive guide to tackling all of these.
The draft plan is accompanied by an action plan which sets out the details of how the borough council will meet its aims, measure progress and continue to work with the community to improve its performance in this area.
John Halsall added: “Fine words are actually very easy when it comes to equalities – but what this draft plan does is set out in practical ways how we can work with partners and the community to make real improvements and how we will make sure we are held to account for those improvements. My ambition is that we create an architecture which delivers continuous improvement in equality to all employees of the council and to all residents of the borough.”