Sector case studies: Regional development agencies

Case study 1

Equality impact assessment helps to shape Wales’ transport strategy

An equality impact assessment had a major impact on the development of One Wales: Connecting the nation. This meant that for the first time the strategy ensures that the development of transport in Wales will take the needs of a diverse range of users into account. This will promote greater social inclusion through improved accessibility.

The strategy addresses how people can access physical sites, services and facilities. It also emphasizes the importance of planning, especially when developing new sites, facilities and services where accessibility should be a core consideration.

A thorough review of data and research was undertaken, and local people were involved through the development of an advisory group representing all equality strands. This identified high-level issues which will be taken forward in national and local transport plans. These include:

  • the importance of continued engagement with the wider community
  • the comparative costs of different modes of travel
  • the need for joined-up service provision reflecting the needs of users
  • the need to improve actual and perceived safety and security
  • of the transport system
  • the importance of getting street design right.

The strategy and the impact assessment can be viewed at: www.wales.gov.uk  

Case study 2

Agency uses the procurement process to influence good practice

The board of a regional development agency has taken a strong lead in ensuring the implementation of the equality duties across the organisation. For example, in order to meet its objectives to be more accessible and inclusive, it was keen to see equality and diversity mainstreamed in the organisation procurement processes.

The e-procurement process used by the agency advises potential suppliers that it is essential service for providers to demonstrate how they have taken all reasonable steps to allow equal access and equal treatment in employment and service delivery. A series of questions enables the agency to gather this information. To support this process, the following actions have been taken:

  • equality assurance accreditation has been gained through a recognised external body
  • an e.procurement website has been developed to widen out tendering opportunities
  • suppliers in the region have been encouraged to seek equality assured accreditation
  • the agency has joined an EU-wide supplier diversity network.

The e-procurement process enables the agency to monitor all tender applications to confirm the make-up of organisations wishing to provide services. It can therefore identify any gaps in its supplier base and consider how these may be most effectively be addressed.

Case study 3

Meeting the needs of religious customers to increase market share.

The Co-operative Funeralcare case study by Diversity Works for London.

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