Equality Standard for Local Government
The Equality Standard for local government in England was established in 2001 through a partnership between the Commission for Racial Equality, the Disability Rights Commission, the Equal Opportunities Commission and the DIALOG unit of the Employers’ Organisation for local government, with advice from the Audit Commission.
Revised in 2006 following a major review, the Standard was extended to address six equality strands: age, disability, gender, race, religion/belief and sexual orientation. The Standard works alongside public sector duties to promote excellence in the management of equality outcomes.
The primary aim of the Standard is to improve outcomes in employment and service delivery through implementing sound performance management practices. It provides a comprehensive framework that public authorities can measure their performance against in relation to mainstreaming Equality throughout the organisation.
The standard consists of five levels, covering all strands of equality and is evidence based.
Local authorities must assess their progress based on five levels:
- Commitment to a comprehensive Equality Policy
- Assessment and consultation
- Setting equality objectives and targets
- Information systems and monitoring against targets
- Achieving and reviewing outcomes
Essex County Fire and Rescue Service has achieved level 3 and is committed to achieving level 5 through the work we are continuing to undertake.