Who is this guide for?
This guide is for local authorities and public bodies. It sets out how to make investment decisions that have a positive impact on equality of opportunity.
How should this guide be used?
This guide outlines:
- how to assess investment decisions to make sure that they have maximum impact on advancing equality
- how to set and scrutinise equality objectives, and
- key examples of good practice to follow.
New funding streams for local government and Combined Authorities (CAs) are presenting major new opportunities to regenerate our towns and cities and regrow our economy. The Levelling Up and Shared Prosperity Funds, the ongoing City Region Deals, devolution related investments, freeports and enterprise zones all have the potential to grow our local and regional economies. This funding can have a major impact on your citizens.
However, not everyone is starting from the same base. People from some ethnic minority communities, disabled people and women, particularly lone parents, tend to live in the greatest poverty and have high levels of economic inactivity.
Local and Combined Authorities have legal duties to ensure that their regeneration policies are not directly or indirectly discriminatory to one or more groups and also to consider taking steps to advance equality of opportunity.
The opportunity to level up our regions must come with a commitment to level up our communities, not only to improve equality of opportunity, but also better social cohesion. That responsibility rests with the elected members who sit on local and Combined Authority committees.
It is critical that elected members use their scrutiny powers to ensure that wherever possible these new opportunities are accessible to all, particularly those most disadvantaged.
Last updated: 31 Aug 2023