The Equality Impact of ‘Big Society’

This website contains some materials and follow-on ideas from the 2-day event:
The Equality Impact of Big Society (17-18 March 2011, Middlesex University).

The conference leaflet and programme is available to download here.
Handouts from the conference ara available to download here.

The conference podcast is available to download here. [new!]

Please note this site is still under construction and it will be updated and polished up in the next few days.

If you have any query about this website or the event last March, please email:


April 1, 2011 at 11:45 am Leave a comment

The Big Squeeze – 2011 report

LVSC (London Voluntary Sector Council) has recently published the latest edition of their ‘The Big Squeeze’ report, looking at the impact of recession and public spending cuts on the voluntary sector.

The report shows that Londoners and the voluntary and community organisations who support them are being hit harder than ever due to the continued impact of the poor economic climate and of the current public sector spending cuts. Over half (51%) of organisations have had to close services over the last year and 54% expected further service closures over the next year.

To download the report and to know more about ‘The Big Squeeze’, visit:

July 22, 2011 at 11:20 am Leave a comment

Is government economic policy fair to women?

‘Budgeting for Gender Equality: is government economic policy fair to women?’
Wednesday 11 May, 6.30-8pm
Sheikh Zayed Theatre, New Academic Building, London School of Economics

Gender Institute and Department of Sociology Discussion
Speakers: Dr Claire Annesley, Beatrix Campbell, Professor Diane Elson, Professor Susan Himmelweit
Chair: Professor Judy Wajcman

Are women, especially low income women, bearing an unfair share of the burden of the budget deficit reduction?
Claire Annesley is senior lecturer in politics at the University of Manchester. Beatrix Campbell is a journalist, author, playwright and broadcaster. Diane Elson is professor in the Department of Sociology at the University of Essex. Susan Himmelweit is professor of economics at the Open University.

This event is free and open to all with no ticket required. Entry is on a first come, first served basis. For any queries email or call 020 7955 6043.

May 3, 2011 at 10:46 am Leave a comment

Stand up for your public services

Source: Leigh Day and Co Solicitors

The new coalition government has announced huge cuts in public spending which will necessarily result in huge cuts to public services. Before making a decision to cut or reduce a public service most public bodies must:

  • Consult users and potential users of the service about the proposal to cut and consider their views before deciding whether to proceed with the proposed change; and
  • Carefully consider and assess the impact of the proposed cut in relation to their duty to promote equality and tackle race, disability and gender discrimination.

A failure to fulfill either of these obligations is likely to render a decision to cut a public service unlawful and susceptible to legal challenge.

Leigh Day and Co Solicitors have represented many organisations and individuals challenging the behavior of public authorities. The ‘Stand up for your public services’ leaflet provides information on the legal framework and how public authorities can be legally challenged.

April 20, 2011 at 10:58 am Leave a comment

The Impact on Women of the Budget 2011

14 April 2011 – A new report from Women’s Budget Group and the Fawcett Society considers the impact of Budget 2011 on women.

Key findings of  ‘The Impact on Women of the Budget 2011’  include:

– The current economic strategy looks set to undermine gender equality in the labour market: if current trends continue, more women than men in the UK will be unemployed, for the first time since records began.

– The bonfire of regulations will remove the protections that women and men with caring responsibilities need in order to be able to work.

– The increase in the Personal Tax Allowance threshold will not touch the most vulnerable, and among those who will benefit, men will gain £140 million more than women.

– Without action to tackle entrenched gender inequality within the apprenticeship sector, where women earn on average 21 per cent less than men, the Government’s flagship expansion in apprenticeships and training opportunities will not improve the employment opportunities young women face and do nothing for older women.

– The businesses set to benefit most from new tax breaks and other incentives are typically owned and invested in by men while schemes to support women in business are scrapped.

April 20, 2011 at 10:48 am Leave a comment

London’s Poverty Profile

London’s Poverty Profile is “the first independent, comprehensive source of information about poverty and inequality in the capital. It has been created by one of London’s largest charitable trusts, Trust for London, and the independent thinktank, New Policy Institute”.

London’s Poverty Profile uses the latest official data to reveal patterns of poverty across the capital. It looks at how London compares to other English regions and cities, and the differences between London boroughs.

London’s Poverty Profile was launched in 2009, with a printed report that is available to download here. The latest report analyses the impact of the recession on the capital.

April 20, 2011 at 10:44 am Leave a comment

The future of the BME voluntary sector

Voice4Change – A shared vision for the future of the BME voluntary and community sector

This publication sets out a long term shared vision for the Black and Minority Ethnic voluntary and community sector (BME VCS). Informed by over 100 online questionnaire respondents and 13 in depth interviews it explores nine key areas for the VCS including building a more equal society, fair access to funding and embedding equality in localism. It sets out areas of action that policymakers can take working in partnership with BME voluntary and community organisations to improve outcomes for BME communities. It also identifies opportunities for the BME VCS.

For further info and to download click here.

April 20, 2011 at 10:35 am Leave a comment

The future of the third sector – 15-17 June 2011

The future of the third sector – 15th-17th June 2011
A Cumberland Lodge conference in association with the Third Sector Research Centre

This event is an opportunity to shape debate about the future of the third sector and examine the emerging priorities of the ‘big society’. Leaders in the sector will speak alongside influential researchers, interrogating the impact of recent policy changes. Research on the latest trends in giving and volunteering will be discussed, along with an analysis of the social enterprise movement and guidance on how charities can demonstrate their value.

Cumberland Lodge is dedicated to initiating fresh debate on matters affecting society. It organises events attended by influential policy makers, researchers and sector leaders. Held under the Chatham House rule – this will be a unique opportunity to talk frankly about the how to get the best from the sector in difficult times.

For further info click here.

April 20, 2011 at 10:33 am Leave a comment

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