Anti-racism pledge update

Date of Meeting:

18th January 2021

Report of:

Rachel Sharpe (Interim Director: Housing, Neighbourhoods and Communities)

Contact Officer:


Sarah Tighe-Ford


01273 29 2301



Ward(s) affected:







1.1         The initial report on actions being taken by the council towards becoming an anti-racist council was presented at TECC committee on 29th July 2020 and an update was presented on 19th November. At this meeting officers were instructed to provide brief updates as a standing item at every TECC committee meeting.


1.2         This report provides an update on actions since 19th November.


2.         RECOMMENDATIONS:    


2.1         That TECC committee note the report.




3.1         The report to TECC Committee on 19th November contains the full background and details of actions taken up to that date and this report should be read in that context.


3.2         Updates are noted where specific activities or progress has been made. Other actions from the pledges, Notices of Motion and petitions continue to be in progress and updates will be provided as progress develops.


3.3         Engagement with communities


3.3.1    The second meeting of the Community Advisory Group took place on 12th November, with two working groups agreed (meeting WB 14th December) to draft terms of reference for the group, a process for agreeing a chair, and a review of the council’s definition of racism.


3.3.2    The next meeting of the full group is planned for mid-January, to discuss and agree the results of the two working groups and to pilot a thematic discussion, focused on council workforce and actions to address identified issues.


3.4         Education and young people


3.4.1    The NoM request for the Chief Executive to write to the Secretary and Shadow Secretary of State for Education was completed.


3.4.2    Progress the Notice of Motion from June 2020 CYPS committee: In November the Brighton & Hove Educators of Colour Collective presented to CYPS committee. The council’s draft Anti-Racist Schools Strategy was presented and agreed by Committee. There is now a process of engagement with this strategy with schools, young people, governors and community groups. Funding proposals to support the strategy are being developed and will be presented to budget Council in February 2021 for approval. This work requires significant funding to make a real difference to the systemic racism impacting on and causing harm to pupils, students and staff of colour in Brighton & Hove schools. If the funding is agreed the strategy will be implemented in the summer term.


3.4.3    Children’s Safeguarding and Care Anti-Racist project: An experienced black social worker and manager has been appointed and started as the anti-racist lead practitioner within the service. The service’s anti-racist project board continues, focussing on experience of workforce, improving practice with families and enhancing the capturing and response to the voices of BAME service users.


3.4.4    Ensuring BAME voices inform the SEND Strategy: The strategy got cross party endorsement at children, young people and skills committee in November 2020. The presentation at committee highlighted the work that had been put in place to better engage with the BAME SEND community in the city and work continues to progress that commitment.


3.5         Community Safety


3.5.1    The Racial Harassment Forum (RHF) is leading on a campaign to increase the reporting of racist and faith hate crime & incidents in partnership with Sussex Police and Brighton & Hove City Council as part of the city's Anti-Racist pledge. The campaign was launched 8th December. The campaign is raising community awareness using printed leaflets, post card and multi-lingual video clips on racist and faith hate crime & incidents and how to report it, and how RHF advocates and provides support to affected and harmed persons.


3.5.2    The RHF also launched a questionnaire to increase the reporting of racist and faith hate crime & incidents in Brighton and Hove


3.6         COVID19 response


3.6.1    The recruitment of a Community Engagement Officer to engage with different ethnic communities to ensure support to residents during C19 is in progress.


3.7         Civic leadership


3.7.1    Discussions are still in progress with Operation Black Vote with the aim of creating a local civic engagement programme.


3.8         Fair & Inclusive Action Plan (FIAP) anti-racism actions


3.8.1    The HR Diversity Recruitment Consultant post will be advertised in December.


3.9         Council Workforce Learning and Development


3.9.1    7 anti-racism training sessions have been held for specific teams, one open session (for all staff) and one for elected Members. 2 further focused sessions and 6 open sessions are planned for staff


3.9.2    A further anti-racism session for members is planned for Wednesday 17 March and details are on the Learning Gateway View Details | Brighton & Hove CPD Online ( This training will include a focus on the different forms that racism can take, including anti-Semitism, anti-Blackness and other forms of prejudice.


3.9.3    Mandatory staff briefings: 20 x 90 minute briefings have been delivered so far on MS Teams. 3000 staff have attended or are due to attend and work is in progress with DMTs, teams and staff to make sure they can access one of the remaining sessions. There is also work on some bespoke options for services where virtual delivery isn’t possible. Discussions will start with DMTs in early 2021 about the next phase of L&D.


3.10      Other actions


3.10.1 A total of 22 groups were funded under the BAME Engagement Fund (the council’s VCS grant programme adapted to respond to the needs of BAME communities resulting from the COVID19 pandemic), and the fund’s budget was £25,000.


3.10.2 A range of meetings are being held with groups and individuals who experience racism, to understand their specific experiences and needs.




4.1         The progress outlined above is on actions undertaken in response to the council’s pledge to become an anti-racist council, anti-racism Notices of Motion and petitions accepted by full council/committees and previously Member agreed work under the Fair & Inclusive Action Plan.




5.1         Engagement is as outlined in the TECC report of 19th November.


6.         CONCLUSION


6.1         TECC committee requested a standing item on every agenda updating on progress towards the council’s anti-racism commitments.


6.2         This report updates on progress and the contents are for Members to note.




Financial Implications:


7.1         Project management and leadership of the work is being carried out as part of core business of the Communities, Equality and Third Sector (CETS) team. A budget of £10,000 has been allocated from the CETS initiatives budget to support core aspects of the work (ie: community engagement and statues and monuments review). Financial implications arising from the other actions identified in the report will be considered by the relevant service as part of their standard budget management processes and decisions on allocation of funding will be made in line with council’s budget setting process.


            Finance Officer Consulted:     Michael Bentley                            Date: 08/12/20


Legal Implications:


7.2         There are no legal implications arising from this report which is for noting. All of the actions proposed are in line with the Council’s powers and duties, in particular under the Equality Act 2010.


            Lawyer Consulted:                   Alice Rowland                               Date: 10/12/20



            Equalities Implications:


7.3         The intention of this work is to address identified racial inequalities and racism experienced by people who live in, work in and visit the city. The range of engagement planned with people who share other characteristics in addition to their ethnicity will ensure that perspectives are heard from a wide range of people. This will enable the development of tailored and bespoke actions to address all forms of racism, where it is based on ethnicity, skin colour or any other attribute.


7.4         The work is central to the council’s legal duties under the Equality Act 2010 to eliminate discrimination, advance equality of opportunity and foster good relations between communities, as well as to encourage civic engagement by under-represented groups. It also complements and supports the council’s Fair & Inclusive Action Plan in addressing the findings of the review of race diversity by Global HPO.


            Sustainability Implications:


7.5         No implications arising from this report


Brexit Implications:


7.6         No implications arising from this report


Any Other Significant Implications: