We collect data on the characteristics (the equality profile) of its work force against many of the protected characteristics as defined in the Equality Act 2010. Similarly we collect data on job applicants.
We do this to understand and help ensure our recruitment and employment policies, procedures and practices do not unlawfully discriminate against people who share a particular characteristic. Periodical assessment of the data helps us understand the impact of our policies and whether they need to be adapted to encourage greater representation of underrepresented groups.
We have been monitoring the protected characteristics of age, disability, race/ethnicity and sex (gender).
We analyse the equality profile of people under the following criteria:
- Overall employment
- Access to training and development
- Discipline and grievance cases
- Performance appraisal outcomes
- Staff turnover (the number of leavers)
- Internal promotions
- External recruitment
The equality profile of the overall workforce (303 in total) of the Council shows a reasonable balance between male (53%) and female (47%) employees (in the year 2012/13).
Of the overall employees, 22 (7.3%) have declared that they have a disability that is recognised under the definitions set out in the Equality Act 2010. This reasonably reflects the representation of disabled people in the community who are available for work.
There is a low representation of employees from minority ethnic groups, but the level is consistent with the representation of minority groups in the community in which the significant majority (94% - 2011 census figure) describe themselves as ‘white’.
From the review of the data on applicants for employment, the most significant conclusion is there is a disproportionately low representation of applicants who declare that they have a disability. Although the equality monitoring data on job applicants is separated from the application form immediately on receipt such that those who are involved in the selection are unaware of this characteristic, this low representation may indicate reluctance on the part of disabled applicants to declare their disability when making their application.
We are regularly audited to ensure it adheres to the principles of the Two Ticks symbol which demonstrates it has appropriate procedures in place for the recruitment and development of staff who have a disability.
Regardless, the Council is looking at ways in which it can present itself better as an employer that welcomes applications from members of the community who are disabled.