Sheffield City Council have 4 key objectives relating to Equality
Our Equality Objectives demonstrate the Council’s commitment to challenging inequality and promoting a fair and inclusive Sheffield. We have 4 objectives, each with a set of 3 more specific aims. They will guide the work we do in the city over the next 4 years and help us retain our focus on important areas, so we can really make a difference.
Our Equality Objectives are based on evidence and feedback that we collect from residents, customers and our staff. They also reflect and help address areas of persistent inequality, as outlined in our Annual Equality Report 2017-18. As part of developing our Equality Objectives we received over 170 responses from individuals and organisations and this feedback has helped to shape our final objectives. You can read the Consultation Report for further details.
As a council we want to provide high quality and accessible services that deliver what matters most to our diverse communities. We know that good quality information leads to well informed decisions, which in turn impact on the suitability and quality of services.
- We will improve the data we hold about people who use our services in terms of consistency and robustness. This will include capturing improved equality monitoring data to enable us to better understand people’s needs and levels of satisfaction.
- We will work with the people of Sheffield and our partner organisations, including the voluntary, community and faith sector, to ensure data and knowledge are used to deliver joined up approaches to the big challenges that affect the city and our communities. Data on equalities will also be used to ensure we set a fair and evidence based budget for the council.
- We will improve the information we hold about our diverse communities including around influence, engagement and cohesion. We will continue to undertake a broad range of consultation and engagement activities to inform decision making and will support underrepresented communities to raise issues and put forward solutions.
We will continue to promote inclusion, fairness and accessibility in our workforce, whilst raising our workforce diversity. A representative workforce will help us deliver services that are accessible, appropriate and that help reduce inequalities. Despite progress over recent years and in a period of continued economic challenge, we still do not have a workforce that reflects the diversity of the city, particularly at senior levels. We also have notable differences in the experiences of some staff groups with regards to morale and opportunity.
- We will work towards achieving Disability Confident at Level 3 (currently level 2). We will also undertake work to further understand and respond to lower morale scores for disabled staff to try and bring them in line with non-disabled staff.
- We will work to increase the diversity of top earners from the following groups, BAME (Black Asian Minority Ethnic), Women, Disabled People and LGB+ and trans people; based on Chief Officer grade and equivalent.
- We will increase awareness about the support available to carers within our workforce. In response to lower morale scores we will undertake further work to understand the challenges carers are facing and what can be done in response, with a view to bringing scores in line with non-carers.
Our diversity is one of our greatest strengths. As a council we want to lead the city in celebrating and promoting our diversity and the benefits and opportunities it brings. We will continue to promote inclusion, fairness and accessibility, whilst raising the profile of Sheffield as a great place to live, study and visit.
- We will work with our partner organisations across all sectors, to celebrate and promote our diverse city locally and nationally. We will support and promote events and activities that celebrate and raise awareness with our diverse communities.
- We will continue our work to tackle poverty and promote social justice, including through the Fairness and Tackling Poverty Partnership and Making Sheffield Fairer Campaign Group. We will raise awareness of the Fair Employer Charter and Living Wage with employers in the city; and will ensure our commissioning processes are fair and inclusive.
- We will continue to support citywide work to ensure our city is an inclusive and accessible place to live and visit. We will work with our partner organisations to raise awareness of hate crime and how it can be reported; and will continue to challenge discrimination, bullying and harassment.
We know that some groups experience poorer life chances than others and that poverty can be a significant factor in determining life chances and wellbeing. At a local and national level there are also areas of persistent inequality which remain a considerable challenge. We will continue to focus on those in greatest need to ensure that people can access services and support that works for them.
- We will focus on improving health and wellbeing in the city, especially for groups that experience poorer outcomes. We will ensure decent, inclusive and accessible housing that promotes wellbeing. Health inequalities will also be a key focus of our revised Health and Wellbeing Strategy and we will continue to join up and improve health and social care services to provide high quality and accessible care.
- We will work with partners to ensure there are effective pathways into education, training and employment (including apprenticeships) to enable young people to fulfil their ambitions. We will continue to work with schools and partner organisations from early years onwards, to ensure children have a great start in life and to close attainment gaps for disadvantaged pupils and children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).
- We will work with the Police, health, specialist providers and other partner agencies to tackle domestic and sexual abuse. We will work with communities and interest groups on prevention, and ensuring key messages about healthy relationships, consent and sexual harassment are included in ‘relationships and sex education’ in the city. We will develop whole family working on domestic abuse that supports victims and children and holds perpetrators to account; and ensure services are accessible and meet the needs of our diverse communities.
As a large public sector organisation our Equality Objectives cover a broad range of areas. Over the next 4 years we will deliver our objectives through projects, policies and strategies that shape how we deliver services; and will work with others on areas like supporting children, young people and families and improving health and wellbeing.
Each year, through our Annual Equality Report, we will provide an update on each of the 4 Objectives, including how we are delivering and the outcomes. Our Annual Equality Report also includes a detailed set of data on our workforce diversity, so you can see how we are progressing. The first Annual Equality Report for our new 2019-23 objectives will be published in spring 2020.