Agenda item

Strategic Equality Plan

Scrutiny of the Annual Monitoring Report 2020-2021.


Alan Burkitt presented the report and answered the members’ questions.




Regarding disability, can we provide employment for people who are coming up to retirement, or have retired?


The question is whether there is a limit on who we would look to employ, within the protected characteristics: age, for example, shouldn’t make a difference to whether someone is employed. An older person will bring a wealth of experience but needs to be balanced against bringing through younger employees. The current situation of working from home has potentially changed matters, as, for example, someone with a physical disability who might have had difficulties in the office can now work from home with fewer limitations. With a recent case of a young person with autism whose employer didn’t know how to work with his needs, we have worked to get him into a placement and mentor him. So, there is a lot of work in this area that goes on in the background.


The term ‘gender pay gap’ is confusing because of the difference between jobs and the difference between those who do the same job. Is it a Welsh Government term?


Yes, the gap doesn’t necessarily concern a difference between those doing the same job, but comparable jobs – levels of comparable responsibility. For example, as a society we currently have the question of how to hire more carers (who tend to be female) – do we need to properly assess the properties and skills needed to be a one-to-one carer, and reconsider what they are paid, given what they contribute and provide? It’s hard to give specifics but it essentially concerns the problem that, historically, a female-dominated career hasn’t been paid the same as a male-dominated career with equivalent skills. There shouldn’t be a gender stereotype now with jobs, which also needs to change. The gender pay gap is something that we need to report on as part of the Equality Act.


The gender pay gap comes down to wording. There used to be a problem of women being paid less for the exact same job. On the other hand, there are now some men who stay at home because their partner is able to earn more, so things are changing.


Yes, there is still a long way to go, but we are working on it.

On p11, objectives 3, there is a reference to the Box Clever Digital platform. Has testing resumed?


At the time of this report being written it was delayed by the pandemic. There isn’t any further information yet, but I can check and update members.


What effect will the socio-economic duty have on these reports?


It’s now a part of our Integrated Impact Assessment process (it came in last March). When officers carry out an Impact Assessment, they have to consider the socio-economic duty i.e. if something in the report might have a financial impact, they have to consider and discuss it. To date, it is more likely to have come up as part of the Budget process, or if we’re looking to revise a pricing strategy, for example. Not every report that goes to Cabinet, Council or Individual Cabinet Member decisions affects every area. There hasn’t been a particular example in the Integrated Impact Assessment process so far.


Chair’s Summary:


Thank you to Officer Burkitt for this report. The committee accepted the recommendations.

Supporting documents: