Equally Ours statement on the Government’s Inclusive Britain Action Plan

Britain needs a step change on race equality. We see that every day at Equally Ours in the experiences of our networks and communities, government and ONS data, and published research.

We welcome many of the measures in the government’s Inclusive Britain Action Plan, including Michael Gove’s recognition that equality is central to Levelling Up, and the recognition of the need to do more to tackle race discrimination. We look forward to working with government on progressing these important initiatives.

However, the plan falls short of the ambitious cross-government race equality strategy that we have been calling for, that would drive the step change the country needs. This could be achieved by building objectives to advance race equality into all major public policy initiatives, from levelling up, to the National Resilience Strategy, to housing and beyond.

We welcome the plan’s recognition of the responsibilities of employers, service providers and policymakers to remove the barriers that hold Black and ethnic minority people back and cause harm. But it does not go far enough to address the systemic problems within these organisations or make a difference at scale. And the proposals on impartiality in the public sector could prevent important problems from being addressed. Actions in these areas will need careful further development.   

Finally, our members are hugely concerned about Government proposals on the policing bill, elections bill, changes to the Human Rights Act, and on asylum and immigration. These will harm people from Black and ethnic minority communities and undermine the Inclusive Britain Action Plan. The inconsistency between these bills and Inclusive Britain’s ambitions further demonstrates the need for a cross-government race equality strategy.

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