Wednesday, 30 July 2008

The forever failing campaign for equal opportunities in the Assembly Government

Back in November 2007 this blog's second post drew attention to the Welsh Assembly Government's poor performance in relation to equal opportunities.

Back then, an assembly government spokesperson said that applicants from ethnic minority groups had risen from 2.1% in 2005-06 to 3.7% in 2006-07. This reflected work that had been done to raise awareness of the assembly government as an employer among ethnic minority groups, the spokesperson added.

It seems that little has been done in terms of improvement.

The Western Mail has recently reported on the issue:

The Welsh Assembly Government was attacked yesterday for failing to put people from ethnic minorities in leadership positions.

The latest figures for April 2007 show just two high-ranking officials come from such backgrounds – the equivalent of 1.4% of senior management.

This is a fall on 2006, when 2.6% of such staff were in this category.

In this time the total number of ethnic minority staff working across the Assembly Government has increased by just one, from 181 to 182.

The information was revealed by First Minister Rhodri Morgan in response to requests by Conservative Assembly leader Nick Bourne.

Mark Isherwood, Tory Shadow Minister for Social Justice and Equality, called on ministers to launch a new drive to recruit more government staff from ethnic minorities.

Ron Davies, former Welsh Secretary and director of the Valleys Race Equality Council, described the findings as “very, very disappointing”.

He said that a high number of ethnic minorities live near Assembly Government headquarters but this is not reflected in staff numbers.

An Assembly Government spokesman said:
We actively pursue an equality agenda, and we are determined that everyone in Wales regardless of their race, gender, sexual orientation or disability are given every opportunity to succeed.

Why do I get the impression that the Head of Human Resources is still meeting all his targets?


Dotcommentator 30 July 2008 at 10:01  

My anecdotal evidence: I've NEVER seen a non-white person in and around the Assembly or Assembly Government buildings who wasn't a cleaner.

Billy Khan. 30 July 2008 at 11:17  

"We actively pursue an equality agenda, and we are determined that everyone in Wales regardless of their race, gender, sexual orientation or disability are given every opportunity to succeed."

With around 25% of adults suffering from mental illnesses, one has to ask how many autistics and schizophrenics find themselves within the assembly staff.
Or those with learning difficulties....
But then statistics show that Welsh prisons are the natural place for those with learning disabilities and mental disorders.
Wales has a Romany/Gypsy population that runs into tens and tens of thousands, yet not one, as far as I know, holds any position of authority or power within Welsh politics.
Again, the Gypsies are more often persecuted and "moved on", rather than being invited into the processes of state.

Valleys Mam 30 July 2008 at 13:02  

actively pursue, its abit like working towards.As long as you put th ephrase in it looks as if there is some life in the process.
I have to say though DotCom. I know several memebers of the BME community who work at WAG.But not in large numbers

Anonymous 30 July 2008 at 14:33  

In my time there the only non white people (apart from cleaners) have belonged to the Equality & Diversity Unit, which speaks volumes

Anonymous 30 July 2008 at 19:26  

In my time at WAG I see a very culturally diverse organisation, much more so than many welsh communities. I also see a number of scs staff from ethnic communities. However I also see of and know of staff from all walks who it can only be assumed are in their position to tick boxes. ( the same goes for wag appointments where boxes again have to be ticked) Poor performance is ignored to meet targets. You may criticise, but a policy of the best person for the job is the only way to look at staffing the welsh civil service. Where is the taget for wales biggest ethnic community, the english? (And am not sure wales does have a population of tens of thousnds of romany gypsies, but even if we do there is no stopping them applying for posts?)

Anonymous 30 July 2008 at 20:33  

Bernard Galton is from a minority community (althought its numbers grow inexorably) - he's English. But then, most of the senior management in WAG are English - I wouldn't mind so much if the fu*kers could even bring themselves to live in Wales. (Bath my a*se, bet he knows a lot about Butetown and Tylortstown!)

Anonymous 30 July 2008 at 22:14  

very few senior staffers are actually english, and even if they were, but they were very good and competent would that be so bad. we just want good, if not the best people.

Anonymous 30 July 2008 at 22:37  

I can't help agree with the better comments above. What I'm wondering is why so many of the Assembly's Management Board are not Welsh. There must be some talent that we can draw towards Wales or do most talented Welsh people move to London and SE England?

Anonymous 30 July 2008 at 23:42  

Isn't that one reason why a Welsh PermSec was chosen this time?

phil 30 July 2008 at 23:48  

It's a shame that we're unable to discover just how much these bonuses are, and what exactly they're given for.

Anonymous 1 August 2008 at 08:30  

Anyone else noticed the extraordinary resemblance between Rhodri Morgan and Radovan Karadžić?

Anonymous 6 August 2008 at 17:38  

"Anyone else noticed the extraordinary resemblance between Rhodri Morgan and Radovan Karadžić?"

Must be the grey hair and unkempt look.

And years in the wilderness

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