Pressure mounts on EHRC Board to stop cuts!
JANUARY 21, 2020
The joint campaign launched to highlight the huge budget cuts facing the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has received support from Birmingham MP Jack Dromey who has committed to raising the issue in Parliament.
In a letter written to Chair of the Board, David Isaac CBE, Mr Dromey pleads with the EHRC to "act now - save the EHRC" and spells out his support for the trade unions efforts to stop what he describes as the 'progressive dismantling of the Commission'.
He expresses his deep concern that the Commission has accepted a 25% cut to its budget over the next four years and notes the devastating impact that frontloading them will have on staff in terms of compulsory redundancies.
Like the joint unions, Mr Dromey challenges the Commission on the cost of implementing a new operating model and highlights the cost of previous restructuring exercises that have seen £14 million spent on non payroll staff since 2010.
One of the most shocking statistics outlined by Mr Dromey is taken from last years annual accounts that shows the Commission spent over £1 million on just seven individuals. He also highlights the impact of compulsory redundancies on the Commission's BME and disabled staff. The majority of the EHRC’s older, disabled and ethnic minority staff are in the lowest paid posts and the Commission has failed to provide the unions with an equality assessment of the impact of these proposals.
We recently highlighted the seemingly 'hypocritical stance' taken by the Commission following the publication of its report, with the Chair stating ‘We must redouble our efforts to tackle race inequality urgently or risk the divisions in our society growing and racial tensions increasing’. We suggested that the EHRC should undertake a bit of self-reflection to ensure that it lived up to its own ethos of equality and fairness for its entire workforce, and that as the equalities regulator it should ensure that it sets an example as an employer on how to recruit and retain its BME work force. You can read more on our blog here.
How can you help our campaign?
We need your help to get more MPs to urgently intervene!
These cuts will have a devastating impact on the vital services that the Commission provides and the people who rely on them. There will be nowhere to turn for support for victims of discrimination or human rights abuses who don’t qualify for legal aid, can’t afford tribunal fees, aren’t a member of a trade union, and whose local law centre or CAB has closed.
Please take 2 minutes to write to your MP and ask them to make direct representation in Parliament. You can use our letter outlining the concerns here.