Prime Minister, Theresa May has ordered a race audit of public services across the UK, to reveal racial disparities and end inequality.
The audit will ‘shine a light’ on how public services treat people from different backgrounds. The public will then be able to check how their race affects how they are treated on issues such as health, education and employment. The audit will be broken down into geographic location, income and gender.
The Prime Minister’s decision to conduct the audit comes as the latest figures from the Equality and Human Rights Commission show large disparities between how people are treated depending on their race.
The audit will force Whitehall departments to publish the information, and will affect public services such as the NHS, emergency services and local councils.
The latest figures show that if you are from a Black Caribbean background, you are three times more likely to be permanently excluded from school; if you are a black woman, you are seven times more likely to be detained under mental health legislation than a white woman; the employment rate for ethnic minorities is ten per cent lower than the national average; and people living in ethnic minority households are almost twice as likely to live in relative poverty as white people. White working class boys are also less likely to go to university than any other group.
Speaking about the decision to introduce the audit, May said, “When I stood on the steps of Downing Street on my first day, I made clear that I believe in a United Kingdom by every definition – and that means the government I lead will stand up for you and your family against injustice and inequality.”
“Today, I am launching an audit to look into racial disparities in our public services that stretches right across government. It will highlight the differences in outcomes for people of different backgrounds, in every area from health to education, childcare to welfare, employment, skills and criminal justice.”
“This audit will reveal difficult truths, but we should not be apologetic about shining a light on injustices as never before. It is only by doing so we can make this country work for everyone, not just a privileged few.”