It was moved by Councillor Carlin, seconded by Councillor Corcoran:
Sefton is home to many people from many diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds and they are key members of our communities. The Council recognises that those of a Diverse Ethnic Background are not homogenous – different communities and individuals within communities have differing needs. Needs that should not be defined by stereotyping or presumptions. This Council understands and acknowledges that systemic and institutional racism is an issue affecting the outcomes for all those who identify with having a Diverse Ethnic Background (DEBs – Previously known as Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic/BAME).
The Pandemic -and its disproportionate impact on disadvantaged groups and ethnic minorities - and the Black Lives Matters Movement give social and racial justice a new level of urgency. There is strong expression of the need for change.
Sefton Council accepts that it has an important role to play in tackling race injustice and inequality and driving forward positive change.
· As a major employer, we must look internally at our own organisation, and ensure that it is representative of the population we serve, welcoming, safe and inclusive, and that DEBs staff have equality of opportunity to develop and succeed.
· As a lead organisation within the community, we have a responsibility to ensure our services are accessible to all of our residents.
· Finally, as a partner in the Liverpool City Region Race Equality Programme, we must use our commitment to race equality to help identify best practice for us, and other organisations and stakeholders, to follow.
The council recognises that there is work to do in order to have a workforce where the percentage of DEBs staff reflects that of the borough’s DEBs community in terms of DEBs staff in the Council’s workforce and DEBs representation at a director and senior management level.
Proportional representation in the workforce is only one indicator of race equality in employment. An equally important indicator is the ‘lived experience’ of DEBs staff and DEBs residents, and we know that tackling the impact of systemic and institutional racism is the key issue to achieve.
Sefton Council is working with the Combined Authority and the other Liverpool City Region (LCR) Councils to develop and deliver a Race Equality Programme that seeks to meet the shared vision of “tackling systemic injustice and inequality and driving forward positive change for our DEBs employees and residents - influencing the partners we work with to do the same”.
Sefton Council is committed to emerge from the current crisis and achieve the Sefton Council Strategy vision of A Confident and Connected Borough.
Our Race Equality Declaration of Intent supports and embodies the Sefton 2030 Vision priority of "Together a Stronger Community". It contributes to ensuring that “We focus on our similarities and the strength that comes from diversity, but never on our differences".
The Success of this intent will be measured by demonstrating that "people feel safe and supported" and ensuring that "people are influencing decisions which ... view the full minutes text for item 135