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Panels launched to tackle discrimination, injustice and inequality across Liverpool City Region

  • Four new Equality Panels covering disability, race, gender, and sexuality meet for first time
  • Panels will help embed equality, diversity and inclusion into everything the Combined Authority does
  • Building on the work of the Fairness and Social Justice Advisory Board

Members of four brand-new Equality Panels – covering disability, race, gender and sexuality – have met for the first time to discuss how they plan to help tackle discrimination, injustice and inequality in the Liverpool City Region.

The panel members met with Liverpool City Region Mayor Steve Rotheram and Mayor of Liverpool Joanne Anderson, the Combined Authority’s Portfolio Holder for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, to discuss how they will work to help embed equality into all Combined Authority activity and decision making.

Mayor of the Liverpool City Region Steve Rotheram said:

“Building a fairer, more equal future for the 1.6 million people who call our area home is the driving force behind my work as Mayor. But I know that I don’t have the monopoly on good ideas – and that I can’t really achieve anything alone.

“That’s why we’ve established our Equality Panels; to give underrepresented groups in our region a platform and to bring some of the most important issues in our society to the forefront of our policy making. It’s my hope that by bringing together experts and a wide mix of people with lived experience, we can make an even bigger impact on people’s lives.

“Because I’m determined to continue fulfilling my commitment to make sure that every person and every community has a chance to thrive in a fair and socially just city region – where no one is left behind.”

The panels will shape and influence all areas of work in the city region, from employment and skills, to transport and the environment, and will build on the work of the Combined Authority’s Fairness and Social Justice Advisory Board.

Mayor Joanne Anderson, Portfolio Holder for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, said:

“It is extremely important for me to leave a lasting legacy about how we engage with everyone across Liverpool City Region which will impact decision-making at Combined Authority level.

“The people we have selected for these panels will offer invaluable insight on how the Combined Authority can embed equality into this process.

“They will be offering constructive criticism and will challenge the Liverpool City Region on their decision-making.

“My call to action for the people participating in the panels is to effectively question and challenge to ensure they have a lasting impact. In doing so, they are setting the wheels of transformative change in motion.”

Each panel has up to 10 members, appointed for a three-year term with chairs for each panel elected yearly.

This further commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion follows the launch last year of the Combined Authority’s Equality Strategy.  Developed in partnership with employees, trade union representatives, residents, advisory panels and local authority partners, the Equality Strategy sets out how the Combined Authority will prioritise those left behind, disadvantaged, or experiencing discrimination, and reduce inequality by enhancing how public services are delivered.

Specifically, it sets out how it will make sure that people with the protected characteristics set out in the Equality Act, as well as those disadvantaged by their socio-economic status, are not discriminated against.

The new Equality Strategy, which will be reviewed every year, also sets out more than 40 specific actions the Combined Authority will take in its three main areas of activity: as a major employer with nearly 1000 staff; as a funder and investor, spending more than £100 million each year, and as a civic leader, with a powerful convening role through the Metro Mayor.