The Equality Act 2010 introduced a single Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED). The duty applies to public bodies such as Denbighshire County Council and includes any maintained schools. This duty was introduced to replace previous equality duties on race, disability and gender.
What does the duty say?
Public bodies (including schools), when carrying out functions, are required to:
- Eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation and other conduct that is prohibited by the act.
- Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a relevant protected characteristic and those who do not.
- Foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not.
Public bodies must publish information that they consciously thought about the three aims of the Equality Duty as part of the process of decision-making. The information must include equality information relating to people who share a relevant protected characteristic such as: age, gender, disability, ethnicity, religion and belief, sexual orientation, pregnancy and maternity, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnerships who are:
- employees (for authorities with more than 150 staff)
- people affected by our policies (e.g. pupils, parents etc...)
Public bodies must publish this information, so that it is accessible to the public, on an annual basis. This is usually shown as an annual report.
How does this affect schools?
The specific duties under the PSED require schools to:
- Prepare and publish equality objectives (once every four years)
- Publish information to demonstrate how we are complying with the PSED (annually)
Schools should set as many objectives as it believes are appropriate to its size and circumstances. The objectives should fit the school’s needs and they should be achievable. Schools do not have to write objectives for each protected characteristic.
Each school will carry out the required actions to deliver on the agreed equality and diversity targets.
Our Corporate Plan incorporates all our equality, diversity and human rights activities taking place throughout the Council. Equality and diversity is embedded throughout all our services in the Council.
Find out about our corporate plan.