Over the last five years, Wales has faced the significant challenges of austerity, Brexit, the climate emergency and the Coronavirus pandemic. In March 2020 a commitment was made by the Welsh Government to produce a Race Equality Action Plan (Action Plan), following calls from the Wales Race Forum and broader stakeholders. Following the convening of the First Minister’s Black Asian and Minority Ethnic COVID-19 Steering Group work and the Socio-economic Sub Group report recommendations, the work to develop the Action Plan was accelerated.
In May 2020, the killing of George Floyd sent shock waves through the global community. In different ways, alongside the other significant challenges over the past five years, a light has been shone on the systemic and institutional racism faced by Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (hereafter ethnic minority) communities, both in Wales and elsewhere.
We, the Welsh Government recognise that it is time for urgent action. Together with partners and stakeholders we have developed a Race Equality Action Plan which includes a vision for the change we want for this work.
Our vision for Wales is a country that is anti-racist, where everyone is treated as an equal citizen. Our purpose is to create meaningful change to the lives of ethnic minority people. We want to do this in a way that is transparent and open, reflects the lived experiences of ethnic minority people into all we do and fully accepts that this is about respecting and making a reality the rights people already have but are not experiencing the benefits of. Jointly with partners, we have also explored what this may look like by 2030, if we succeed.
Development of the Race Equality Action Plan
Following a series of workshops, round table discussions, and in-depth examination of specific policy areas over the last six months we are now consulting on this draft Action Plan. It includes high level goals, actions and outcomes for the policy themes and cross-cutting issues. These sit under our vison for an anti-racist Wales, the purpose is to create meaningful changes to the lives of ethnic minority groups.
In preparing this Action Plan, we have put the lived experiences of ethnic minority people, as well as past research on race disparities at the centre of the co-creation process. More information about the development of the Action Plan is set out in the draft Plan itself.
In addition, we propose an outline of how we would be held to account for this work. This is outlined in the Governance section.
Priority areas for this consultation
The Wales Centre for Public Policy (WCPP) identified evidence based priority areas to be considered in different policy themes and overall in the Plan. It identified the key challenges associated with each of policy theme and sought progress to address them. These priorities reflect the levers available to the Welsh Government and the importance of focussing on what can be done to acknowledge structural and systemic racism and take an active approach in dismantling this. These priorities were:
- employment and income
- leadership and representation
- social care
- hateful crime and justice
- housing and accommodation.
Following further engagement with stakeholders, the below were also identified:
- arts, culture, sports and heritage
- local democracy
- Welsh language
- cross-cutting issues.
Deep-dives and roundtable
A combination of deep dives were convened to draw together the evidence from the research and from lived experience. These enabled policy leads to identify priorities for action and start to develop their goals and actions. The subsequent policy roundtables provide a space to share emerging thinking and test and refine proposals further.
In addition policy leads were supported by community mentors who shared their lived experience and provided feedback on the development of goals and actions for specific policy themes, as well as contributing to the roundtables.
The consultation timeline
During the 12-week consultation period we will be broadening out our engagement and co-construction work and seeking views from individuals, from communities, community based groups, Trade unions, experts by research and those of our public, private and third sector partners to further refine and develop this work.
We will reflect on the responses to the consultation and the further dialogue with communities and wider stakeholders to refine a final version of the Plan. We will seek approval and ownership of the final Action Plan from the new Welsh Government, which will be formed after the forthcoming election for the Senedd. We will aim to publish the finalised plan in autumn 2021.
What we want from you
The Race Equality Action Plan contains clear, targeted actions and this consultation will help us to get feedback on several fronts. We have set a number of questions for your consideration. However, we welcome all responses and they can be in a format that’s most accessible to you. If you would like to send us a video clip with your comments and thoughts, or if you would prefer to write your thoughts in the language you feel more comfortable writing in, we would welcome this.
We will not tolerate hateful comments about a person’s race, religion, disability, sexual orientation or gender identity and any responses that contain hate speech will be passed to the authorities.
The Action Plan has three distinct areas we would like you to give us your thoughts on. They include the vision setting pages, the policy themes with their goals and actions and the governance section.
You may want to comment on one or all of these areas.
Below are some questions that may guide your responses:
Does the vision, purpose, values and the imagined future to 2030 reflect what you would like to see achieved by 2030? What may get in the way to realise the vision and values? What may help to realise the vision and values?
We would like your views on the goals and actions. To comment on some or all of the goals, actions and outcomes please reflect on the below:
- Does the explanation (narrative / background) make clear why we have chosen the goals and actions in this policy area?
- Is it missing any priorities, background or other information?
- Do you agree with the selected goals and actions? What would you add or take away in relation the actions?
- Will each goal and associated actions create the desired outcomes we have stated? If not, what would you want to change so that we achieve changes that are truly anti-racist in the time scales stated?
- How could the positive or negative effect be increased, or mitigated?
Are there any goals and actions that you can think of that are missing? Who should deliver on them and what actions would help to deliver them?
What are the key challenges that could stop the goals and actions achieving anti-racism by 2025?
What resources (this could include funding, staff time, training, access to support or advocacy services among other things) do you think will be necessary in achieving the goals and actions outlined?
Do you feel the Race Equality Action Plan adequately covers the intersection of race with other protected characteristics, such as religion or belief, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, sex, and marriage and civil partnership? If not, how can we improve this?
Please see the section on Governance. What suggestions can you provide for measuring success in creating an anti-racist Wales and for strengthening the accountability for implementation?
We would like to know your views on the effects that these proposals would have on the Welsh language, specifically on opportunities for people to use Welsh and on treating the Welsh language no less favourably than English.
What effects do you think there would be? How could positive effects be increased, or negative effects be mitigated?
Please also explain how you believe the proposed policy approach could be formulated or changed so as to have positive effects or increased positive effects on opportunities for people to use the Welsh language and on treating the Welsh language no less favourably than the English language, and no adverse effects on opportunities for people to use the Welsh language and on treating the Welsh language no less favourably than the English language.
This plan has been developed in co-construction, and discussions around language and identity have shown that many people do not consider the term ‘BAME’ to be appropriate. As a result we refer to Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic people or particular ethnic minority people in the Plan. However, we recognise that this term is also problematic and, where possible, being more specific to the particular race or ethnicity an individual or community identifies with is generally preferred. However, there are times where it is necessary to make reference to all those people who share the experience of being subject to racism.
We have used the term Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic people for this purpose. What are your views on this term and is there an alternative you would prefer? Welsh speakers may wish to consider suitable terminology in both languages.
We have asked a number of specific questions. If you have any related issues which we have not specifically addressed, please use this space to report them:
How to respond
Under the data protection legislation, you have the right:
- to be informed of the personal data held about you and to access it
- to require us to rectify inaccuracies in that data
- to (in certain circumstances) object to or restrict processing
- for (in certain circumstances) your data to be ‘erased’
- to (in certain circumstances) data portability
- to lodge a complaint with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) who is our independent regulator for data protection.
Responses to consultations are likely to be made public, on the internet or in a report. If you would prefer your response to remain anonymous, please tell us.
For further details about the information the Welsh Government holds and its use, or if you want to exercise your rights under the GDPR, please see contact details below:
Data Protection Officer
Data Protection Officer
Information Commissioner’s Office
Information Commissioner’s Office
Telephone: 01625 545 745 or 0303 123 1113
UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR)
The Welsh Government will be data controller for any personal data you provide as part of your response to the consultation. Welsh Ministers have statutory powers they will rely on to process this personal data which will enable them to make informed decisions about how they exercise their public functions. Any response you send us will be seen in full by Welsh Government staff dealing with the issues which this consultation is about or planning future consultations. Where the Welsh Government undertakes further analysis of consultation responses then this work may be commissioned to be carried out by an accredited third party (e.g. a research organisation or a consultancy company). Any such work will only be undertaken under contract. Welsh Government’s standard terms and conditions for such contracts set out strict requirements for the processing and safekeeping of personal data. In order to show that the consultation was carried out properly, the Welsh Government intends to publish a summary of the responses to this document. We may also publish responses in full. Normally, the name and address (or part of the address) of the person or organisation who sent the response are published with the response. If you do not want your name or address published, please tell us this in writing when you send your response. We will then redact them before publishing.
You should also be aware of our responsibilities under Freedom of Information legislation. If your details are published as part of the consultation response then these published reports will be retained indefinitely. Any of your data held otherwise by Welsh Government will be kept for no more than three years.