The framework helps local councils to meet their obligations under the Equality Act 2010 including the Public Sector Equality Duties (PSED)
The Equality Framework for Local Government (EFLG) has four improvement modules:
- Understanding and Working with your Communities
- Leadership and Organisational Commitment
- Responsive Services and Customer Care
- Diverse and Engaged Workforce
In addition, it has three levels of achievement, namely:
The Equality Act 2010 challenges organisations to know how age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion/belief, sex, and sexual orientation describe the experiences of local communities, both individually and collectively. Thinking about the relationship between these ‘protected characteristics' explains the difficulties and opportunities arising from the diversity of local areas. They are a reminder that the consequences of difference on effective service delivery cannot be avoided either for the provider or the user.
Organisations are expected to use this understanding to demonstrate ‘due regard' to the Public Sector Equality Duty to:
- eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation and other conduct prohibited by the act
- advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not
- foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not.
The purpose of the Equality Framework for Local Government (EFLG) remains to help organisations, in discussion with local partners including local people, review and improve their performance for people with characteristics protected by the Equality Act 2010. By using the EFLG organisations can also be helped to deliver on the public sector equality duty (PSED). Organisations using the guidance for self-assessment are likely to reference other locally appropriate characteristics evidenced as suffering inequality (other than those mentioned in the PSED). The EFLG continues to encourage local adaptation with a focus on local issues and problems, and prompts learning from, and the spreading of, good practice.