Equality Act 2010

The equalities agenda has seen numerous legislative developments in recent years which have culminated with the enactment of a single anti-discrimination law; the Equality Act (2010).

An overview of the Equality Act is available below, alongside an overview of the associated public sector Equality Duty. Gravesham Borough Council are committed to meeting the obligations of the public sector Equality Duty and as such, a body of supporting equalities evidence has been published and is accessible on this webpage.

Equality Act 2010

The Equality Act 2010 (EA) replaces all previous anti-discrimination legislation with a single Act. The aim was to simplify the law, to remove inconsistencies and to make it easier for people to understand and comply with it.

Overview of the Act

Overseen by the Equality and Human Rights Commission, the Equality Act 2010 replaced previous individual anti-discrimination laws with a single act to make the law simpler and to remove inconsistencies.

The new single act covers nine protected characteristics, which cannot be used as a reason to treat people unfairly. Every person has one or more of the protected characteristics, so the act protects everyone against unfair treatment. The protected characteristics are:

  • age
  • disability
  • gender reassignment
  • marriage and civil partnership
  • pregnancy and maternity
  • race
  • religion or belief
  • sex
  • sexual orientation

The Equality Act sets out the different ways in which it is unlawful to treat someone, such as direct and indirect discrimination, harassment, victimisation and failing to make a reasonable adjustment for a disabled person.

The act prohibits unfair treatment in the workplace, when providing goods, facilities and services, when exercising public functions, in the disposal and management of premises, in education and by associations (such as private clubs).

Section 149 - The Public Sector Equality Duty

This new duty requires public bodies including Gravesham Borough Council to consider all individuals when carrying out their day to day work - in shaping policy, in determining and delivering services and in relation to their own employees. 

Central to the new duty are three core aims against which public bodies should have due regard:

  • eliminate unlawful discrimination: harassment, victimisation and any other conduct prohibited by the Act;
  • advance equality of opportunity: between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it; and
  • foster good relations: between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.

Gravesham Context and Evidence

On review of the nine protected characteristics, it is apparent that Gravesham is a borough of significant diversity. Key statistics across the protected characteristics include:

  • Gravesham's Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) total of 13,400 residents amounts to 13.6% of all residents in the borough which is the highest percentage across all districts in Kent.
  • The largest growth of a BME community between 2001 and 2009 has been in the Black African community which has grown by 450% and now totals 1,100 residents.
  • According to the 2001 Census, 72.3% of people in Gravesham classed themselves as Christian, the largest faith group.
  • In regards to the working age population and claims for Disability Living Allowance (DLA), Gravesham's figure in February 2011 was 4.7% (4,680).
  • Between 2001 and 2010 the sharpest percentage increase in age categories has been in the numbers of people aged '85+'. This group has increased to total 2,000 over the period in question, a jump of 27.7%.

For a full breakdown of key equalities statistics on the Gravesham population, please select the Equalities Profile document. In addition, for a wider community context, please select the Gravesham Community Profile.

In addition to that material, the council is also keen to publish key equalities data that outlines how equalities is a fundamental consideration for the council in carrying out day to day work - both with our residents and customers and in relation to our own employees. As such, you can also therefore access numerous policies and data sets below.

Equality Objectives

Alongside information relating to the compliance of the Equality Act 2010, the Equality Act (Specific Duties) Regulations 2011 require public bodies to publish one or more specific and measurable equality objectives by 6 April 2012 and then at least every four years (statutory objectives). As such, in order to comply with this additional element, the council have published a series of equality objectives.

Note: Gravesham Borough Council recognises that keeping up to date in this rapidly changing arena is essential. With that in mind the council is committed to reviewing all Equalities policies against new legislation during 2012/13 and will put in place a programme of Equalities Impact Assessments against other key council policies and services that have an impact on the local community. Equalities data will be refreshed on this webpage as and when it is published.

Further Information - Key Contacts

Organisation Name Contact details
Gravesham Borough Council Cllr John Burden -Leader of Gravesham Borough Council (Equalities portfolioholder) Email: john.burden@gravesham.gov.ukTel: 01474 337753
John Britt - Service Manager (Communities) Email: john.britt@gravesham.gov.ukTel: 01474 337195
Kent Equality Cohesion Council Gurvinder Sandher - Director Email: info@kecc.org.ukTel: 01474 369329
The Gr@nd Liz Read - Operational Manager Email: liz.read@gravesham.gov.ukTel: 01474 320832
Age UK (Gravesend) Nigel Vain Tel: 01474 564898
Churches Together in Gravesham -- http://www.gravesendchurchestogether.org/
Shri Guru Nanak Darbar Gurdwara Cllr Narinderjit Singh-Thandi Tel: 01474 350611
Gravesend and Dartford Muslim Association Ejaz Aslam Tel: 01474 323092
Kent Police Joel Cook - Community Liaison Officer Tel: 0777 222 6122
Children's Social Services Karen Coffey Email: karen.coffey@kent.gov.uk
Sure Start Heather Robinson Email: heather.robinson@kent.gov.uk
Rethink Sahayak Carol Gosal Email: carol.gosal@rethink.orgTel: 01474 364837
Last Updated: 01st October 2013