Equality andcommissioning: whatyou need to know Katie Pratt, Chief Executive Equality South West
Key issues:• The UK public sector spend £238bn on procurement (and rising);• Contracts going to private and third sector companies;• EU and UK law for public bodies to meet the needs of diverse communities and reduce inequalities in employment when they buy goods and services;• But confusion about how to do this from both commissioners and how to respond from service providers.
Public Sector EqualityDuty Equality Act 2010 “… requires public bodies, and others who exercise public functions, to have due regard to the need to - eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation; advance equality of opportunity; and foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not share it.”
5 basic steps..1. Planning2. Determining the subject of the contract3. Setting out how the contract is to be delivered4. During the procurement process itself5. Monitoring and management during performance of the contract
PlanningWhat do you want to buy or sell?• An opportunity to consult users or potential users• Review equality outcomes under existing or previous contract• Decide the best way to meet the needs it has identified• Consider the size or length of the contract, so that in some cases contracts will be particularly suited for SMEs (including SMEs led by people from ethnic minorities, women or disabled people)
Subject of the contractWhat are you going to askservice providers to do in relation to equality?• What does your own research tell you are the equality priorities in your area?• What’s relevant will be different according to the contract – i.e. providing healthcare to the public v’s supplying equipment.• Be specific about what you are expecting providers to do e.g. information provided to be accessible, monitor staff diversity and encourage applicants into non traditional roles.
Delivering the contractUnderstand the Public Sector Equality Duties• Make implicit that service providers must themselves show due regard for the Duties e.g. – Recruitment policies and practices – Employment policies and practices – Appropriate training and support
Procurement processIncorporating equality whilst staying true tothe EU procurement rules.Commissioners can take account of:• any findings of discrimination against an employer by a court or employment tribunals;• Past record on workforce equality;• Past record in meeting equality requirements of previous contracts.
Monitoring and managementCollecting the right information, asking theright questions, doing something with thedata.• What equality monitoring data on employees is collected?• What gaps does it reveal?• What action is the provider taking to address the gaps?• What knowledge does a provider have of local equality communities and priorities?
The Equality StandardWho is it for?Organisations of all sizes and from allsectors who want to demonstrate toemployees, funders, volunteers,customers and community that theyactively promote equality and valuediversity in all that they do.
Holocaust MemorialDay: 27 th Jan 2013Communities Together: Build a bridge• ESW are regional champions for the South West• Huge amount of (free) support is available!• See www.hmd.org.uk or ring ESW
For further info……on the Regional Equality Networks,Equality South West Membership, theEquality Standard, an HMD campaign packor anything else: www.equalitysouthwest.org.uk Telephone: 01823 240 260 Twitter: @Equality_SW