Wales is continuing to lead the way on equality. In 2001 Wales became the first country in the UK to establish a Children’s Commissioner to safeguard and promote the rights of children and young people. In 2008 the Assembly Government established the first Older People’s Commissioner to protect the interests of people aged 60 and over in Wales.
The aim of the proposed public sector duties is to deliver improved and inclusive public services that benefit all people in Wales. The new general equality duty will require public authorities to eliminate discrimination, harassment or victimisation, advance equality of opportunity and foster good relations.
The public sector duties will be extended to employees who may have been subject to discrimination in the past. The new duties will cover personal characteristic such as age, disability, race, gender, pregnancy and maternity, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, religion or belief.
The Minister said,
“I remain committed to achieving fairness and equality throughout Wales. Despite the difficult economic climate I am determined to ensure that disabled people have every opportunity to reach their full potential, that we work to create a fair and tolerant society and continue to tackle important issues such as the gender pay gap.”
“I believe that Wales can become a place where people work together to benefit everybody in the community. This vision is at the heart of the draft regulations, and I hope that they will make a real difference to the people of Wales.”
The consultation will last for twelve weeks, closing on 17th December.
The Minister added,
“I have launched this consultation today to hear the views of the people of Wales, and I will consider any changes or suggestions that are offered.”