In 10 days the new Commission for Equality and Human Rights opens up for business. Its aim is “to end discrimination and harassment” on the grounds of disability, race, age, gender, religion or belief and sexual orientation”.
Clearly that’s a tall order and the new body also has an added weight of expectation in that the bodies it replaces (the Commission for Racial Equality, the Disability Rights Commission and the Equal Opportunities Commission) had such a high profile and were not afraid of putting their heads above the parapet.
All three kicked up quite a storm during the summer over the government’s plans to “streamline” (for that read “sideline”) duties on public bodies to promote equality.
One of the commission’s first chances to show it has teeth is by challenging these plans. If it does not, it may well be setting itself up to fail later.
Doubts over single equality commission on eve of launch
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