The EHRC

EHRC logo

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)

My thanks to numbCruncher for directing my artillery this way. I acknowledge him as the source of the FoI enquiry which resulted in the grant data for 2010 – 2013 given below.

Readers of this blog will hardly be surprised to discover that the issues upon which the EHRC chooses to focus are rather biased. But this article also points out a further failing of the EHRC: their colossal inefficiency. What follows is a dissection of a culture of “jobs for the boys – and even more jobs for the girls”. Also, by way of topical flavour, you will be aware that the current conflict over junior doctors’ contracts is essentially a gender issue. The EHRC is weighing into the bout on the doctors side taking exactly this perspective, as will be discussed below.

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This is not the first time I have turned my attention to the egregious EHRC. Most recently I commented on their “Is Britain Fairer (2015)?” report (which cost £468,195 to produce, by the way). I have also given examples previously of the appalling anti-male bias of the EHRC in the context of domestic violence, see Chapter 18 of this report. My original intention for this post was only to make some observations about the cost of the EHRC, together with a sketch of the areas on which the money is spent.

But then I stumbled upon the latest EHRC report: “Socio-economic Equality and Human Rights Commission; Updated submission to the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in advance of the public examination of the UK’s implementation of ICESCR“, April 2016. I could not ignore it, so a brief review of some of the predictable sins of this latest work is included below.

[The ICESCR is the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. This is a United Nations agreement, ratified by the UK way back in 1976. The UK regards the ICESCR as subservient to the UN Charter. The EHRC has a habit of reading more into the ICESCR than is actually there. But I get ahead of myself].

Personnel of the EHRC

Staff data for the EHRC are available on their web site. At May 2016 they have 203 staff, not including the Commissioners, two-thirds are women and one-third men. The executive team, including the newly appointed Chair, is four men and one women. Until April 2016 that would have been three men and two women, but the previous incumbent as Chair, Baroness Onora O’Neill, has now retired.

At the time of writing (May 2016) the EHRC has eleven Commissioners, namely Caroline Waters OBE, Sarah Veale CBE, Evelyn Asante-Mensah OBE, Ann Beynon OBE, Laura Carstensen, Susan Johnson OBE, Dr Lesley Sawers, Lorna McGregor, Rebecca Hilsenrath, Professor Swaran Singh and Lord Chris Holmes (nine out of the eleven being women). The Commissioners are appointed by the Minister for Women and Equalities, so no chance of any bias there then.

The EHRC Chair from January 2013 to March 2016, Baroness O’Neill, is the daughter of a British Ambassador. She enjoyed an education at one of the country’s top private all-girls schools, followed by (at that time) an all-women Oxford college and a doctorate at Harvard. She taught at an all-women’s college in Columbia in the 70s, and was Principal of the stubbornly all-women Newnham College, Cambridge, for 14 years. I mention this, not because I have any difficulty with single sex education – quite the contrary – but because it forms an interesting backdrop to the neglect of male educational failure which will feature below.

In April 2016, David Isaac was appointed as the new Chair of the EHRC. The appointment was contentious. There were claims that Mr Isaacs would have a conflict of interest due to his status as a Partner in the legal firm Pinsent Masons which takes a great deal of their business from the government – whereas the EHRC frequently takes up cases against the government. There are, in fact, painfully obvious reasons why the government might regard the EHRC as a viper at their bosom (for example, the spanner they are chucking into the works in respect of the new junior doctors’ contract). So I expect there is an interesting bit of politicking going on here. Harriet Harman objected to Isaac’s appointment, so the chap can’t be all bad.

Amusingly, the Christians have also raised the issue of conflict of interest in a different context, namely questioning Mr Isaac’s impartiality, given his history of promoting the LGBT agenda, particularly through his role as Chair of Stonewall (which organisation has long been a beneficiary of the EHRC’s munificence). This is touchingly naive, isn’t it? It’s as if one were to object to the Master of the Hunt on the grounds that the blighter is in favour of blood sports. Andrea Williams of Christian Concern wrote to Nicky Morgan in March 2016 making the following observations,

Appointing a Commission Chair who previously led a pressure group with such an agenda would lead to a complete lack of confidence in the impartiality of the Commission from Government. The Equality Act 2010 outlines the rights of protected groups but does not address the question of how competing interests are to be ‘balanced’ when conflicts arise. In this way, it has created a hierarchy of rights. Poor drafting has resulted in the rights of those who identify as homosexual being consistently privileged over the rights of Christians, particularly with regards to historic views on marriage, family and sexual ethics.

Too much truth, there, Andrea – apart from the bit about “poor drafting”. The drafting of the 2010 Equality Act was an object lesson in passing off institutionalised inequality as the opposite: it’s a masterpiece of repressive tolerance in action.

Grants by the EHRC and Their Recipients: 2010- 2013

FoI request 925 drew a response from the EHRC on 12 August 2015. The request was: “Please provide details of all organisations funded and grants made by the EHRC in each financial year 2010-11 through to 2014-15, showing the name of the recipient and the total amount provided to them by the EHRC in each year“. However, the response refers only to “grants made by the Commission”. The terminology used in the EHRC’s internal accounting is such that I am suspicious that the financial data supplied gives only a very partial picture, probably only those items classified in the accounting system as “Grant”. We will see below that the complete accounts include funding external agencies also via differently named categories.

With this proviso, the total grants made by the EHRC in the three years 2010/11, 2011/12 and 2012/13 were £7.33M, £5.79M and £1.42M respectively. The recipients of these monies were itemised in the FoI response, and numbCruncher has usefully categorised each item into groups such as “women”, “ethnic minorities”, “LBGT”, etc. This permits a histogram of the grant donations against group to be compiled, as shown below (click to enlarge).

EHRC_Grants_2010_2013

Note that a proportion of the monies granted to sporting bodies in a later year (2014/15) has been included in the above histogram. However, 96% of the money on which the histogram was compiled relates to the three years 2010/11, 201/12, 2012/13.

If you have read The Wrong Sort of Equality, or have any other acquaintance with the EHRC, you will be unsurprised at the focus evident in the above histogram – or, rather, the absence of certain areas of inequality. I’ll not list the systemic disadvantages experienced by men and boys again – look anywhere on this site, such as the home page, or here perhaps, or here.

Cost of the EHRC: 2013 – 2016

Salary data for the EHRC are available on their web site. When accessed in May 2016, the total salary bill for the 203 staff was £8.2M. To this must be added the employer’s National Insurance contributions and an allowance for the remuneration of the eleven Commissioners, making a total bill of around £9.2M. Longer term, the tax payer becomes obliged to finance the associated public sector pensions. It has been estimated that these very generous pensions are worth ~30% of salary, so the true staff costs of the EHRC may be more like £12M.

Moreover, this ignores agency staff costs, which add a further ~£1M to the total.

The CEO takes a salary of £130,000 whilst the rest of the executive team take around £95,000 each. The average salary of EHRC employees is in excess of £40,000.

As for EHRC costs other than staff salaries, their web site includes detailed data for the last three years. All individual items of expenditure greater than £500 are listed, though it is generally not obvious to what exactly each item relates. The EHRC’s policy of listing every item greater than £500 is clever. The list is so long that it is very difficult to see the wood for the trees. Unfortunately for them, if you give me an ocean of data I’ll happily go fishing in it.

Spreadsheets may be downloaded for each month. Compiling these into complete financial years yields total non-salary costs of £9.0M, £7.8M and £11.4M for financial years 13/14, 14/15 and 15/16 respectively. Data for February 2014 is missing so the 2013/14 total has been estimated from 11 months data times 12/11.

Adding the salary-plus costs, the total current cost of the EHRC is around £23M per year.

Year 2013/14

The following relates to only 11 months data (February 2014 data are missing).

There were 9 items of expenditure in excess of £100,000. All of them related to the cost of premises.

There were 8 items of expenditure between £50,000 and £100,000. Three related to premises and four to IT costs, whilst the last was the cost of an external audit by the National Audit Office (£81,500). I presume that value for money must not be part of the Audit Office’s remit. Pity.

There were 6 items of expenditure between £40,000 and £50,000. One related to premises, two to IT, two to legal fees, and one to travel expenses.

Not a huge showing for helping the disadvantaged in these top 23 items of expenditure, is there? Jobs for the boys and girls? I think so.

The majority of the listed items of expenditure are what I’d call ‘overheads’, in the sense that they are not directly addressing equality or human rights issues but are part of the office or management costs. There are four categories which appear to hold essentially all the costs of addressing real issues. (I’m leaving aside for the moment whether the issues in question are truly worthy of being called ‘real’. I’ll get to that). These categories are: Human Rights, Equality of Opportunity, Legal costs, and Grants, listed as “Grant1”. These sum to £1.39M. By far the largest of these categories is “Legal”, on which £768,699 was spent. Much of this involves bringing cases against the government.

So, out of the total costs of the EHRC in 2013/14 (around £21M) only £1.39M was spent on actual issues. Value for tax payers’ money? I think not. Who is supposed to be accountable?

The total cost of premises and their management was at least £2.6M.

Just short of £1M was spent on IT.

And the cost of staff travel (£352,128) was nearly double the combined spend on Human Rights plus Equality of Opportunity (£188,078).

Some £817,424 was spent on “Transition”, which appears to have been merely an internal re-organisation.

EHRC Costs (£) not all itemised costs are listed – a sample only

Item 2013/14* 2014/15 2015/16
A 68,773 1,222,955 1,245,668
B 119,305 278,643 232,440
C 431,408 89,889 840,014
D 768,699 1,337,614 874,638
E 173,185 310,971 354,606
F 950,525 750,343 1,214,530
G 962,574 1,157,928 1,246,530
H 352,128 362,758 389,565
I 136,199 325,631 254,605
J 817,424 133,294
K ~2,600,000 1,381,505 2,763,059
L 266,372 1,931,539
M 35,580
Total non-staff £9.0M £7.8M £11.4M
TOTAL with staff £18M – £21M £17M – £20M £20M – £23M
Total Actual Issues £1,388,185 £3,195,473 £5,159,879
% Actual Issues# 6.6% 16.0% 22.4%

 *Itemised data is for 11 months only (data for Feb’14 missing);  #Actual issues as a percentage of total EHRC cost

Key to items:-

  • A         Equality of Opportunity
  • B         Human Rights
  • C         Grants (“Grant1”)
  • D         Legal
  • E          Research
  • F          IT costs
  • G         Agency Staff
  • H         Travel
  • I           People Management (external suppliers)
  • J           “Transition” (internal reorganisation)
  • K         Premises
  • L          Discretionary Programme
  • M         Disability Committee

Year 2014/15

Financial data for 2014/15 is included in the Table, above. Categories A, B, C, D and L, which account for “actual issues”, sum to £3.2M out of a total cost of the EHRC to the taxpayer of around £20M. Not an impressive batting average, is it?

There were four items costing in excess of £100,000. One was related to premises, the other three were to recipient IFF Research.

The EHRC paid a total of £1,015,307 to IFF Research over the two years 2014/15 and 2015/16. In March 2016 this resulted in the publication of a Pregnancy and Maternity discrimination report prepared by IFF Research. The ostensible aim of the report was to investigate the prevalence and nature of pregnancy and maternity-related discrimination and disadvantage in the workplace, surveying 3,254 mothers and 3,034 employers. This was the largest expenditure on a single issue over this two year period. (Other expenditure in the same area includes £75,000 to Maternity Action, a group with aligned objectives, plus £124,878 to marketing company 23red). The EHRC used the report to “call for urgent action by the government”. They were going to call for urgent action whatever the report said, of course. The outcome was decided in advance. These huge sums of money are being spent to give spurious legitimacy to what is actually a propaganda campaign.

The EHRC’s concentration on pregnancy and maternity discrimination is in pursuance of the feminist lobby’s number one objective – which is to get more women into work, for longer. They know full well that the gender pay-gap is a myth – or, rather, a piece of propaganda of their own devising. They know that women will persist in prioritising childcare over paid work if they are allowed to do so. Women need to be tricked into being obedient state slaves. Work will make you free, don’t you know (just don’t translate it into German). The EHRC’s campaign on pregnancy and maternity discrimination is motivated by the feminist policy of increasing women’s working hours. Get ye back to toiling in the fields, women! Doesn’t sound so beneficial expressed that way, does it? But present it instead as a right which is being denied women by the nasty oppressive men who run corporations and the psychological con trick is easily accomplished. Whoever it was that coined the phrase “motherhood and apple pie” as typifying what cannot be criticised knew what he was about. Slap the “motherhood” label on your political policy and it becomes Teflon.

[The EHRC can only provide the ammunition for the propaganda machine, of course. It needs the media to fire it. But the media stands ever ready to do so. In the case of the Pregnancy and Maternity discrimination report here is a Telegraph article on Andy Murray which manages to shoe-horn it in, and here is another, and another. References to the EHRC’s report were all over the place as soon as it was published. Odd that. Almost as if it were orchestrated. We are told that “three-quarters of working mothers have experienced bias or been forced out of their jobs as a result of having children“. That’ll wind women up nicely. I suppose in the interests of strict integrity I should chase down the details behind that statistic. For now let’s just say I suspect that it is about as accurate as the claim that 1-in-4 women are raped at university, or whatever the current claim is].

But back to the EHRC’s finances…

There were 16 items costing between £50,000 and £100,000 in 2014/15. Twelve were premises costs. One was for IT. One was to the Office for National Statistics (presumably for research data). One was to the British Institute of Human Rights (BIHR). The BIHR is essentially a sister organisation to the EHRC. Nominally independent, they are ideological clones. In the two years 2014/15 and 2015/16, the EHRC granted the BIHR £350,339.

The last recipient of a single payment in excess of £50,000 was Premier Rugby. This was the only item out of the 16 for an actual “issue” (not that it really is an issue, in my opinion).

Over the two years 2014/15 and 2015/16, the EHRC granted Premier Rugby a total of £626,475, plus a further £34,073 to Sport Wales and Sport Scotland. This has been done with the blessing (perhaps the prompting?) of the Minister for Sport, Helen Grant MP, who welcomed the fact that diversity is at the top of Premier Rugby’s agenda. She stated that the initiative by Premier Rugby, “will support an increase in the number of women and girls involved in the sport and promote the game amongst Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) groups“. With such large sums of money being available to espouse the diversity cause, who would not be tempted?

[As an aside, a few weeks back there was talk about banning tackling in school rugby. Dim of me not to realise at the time that it was gender related].

Along the same lines we are told thatthe Commission is funding a £450,000 major new initiative to boost participation levels in cricket.  The joint scheme with the English Cricket Board (ECB) will encourage more women, girls, and black and ethnic minority people to take up the sport, as well as improving disabled access at cricket grounds“. Indeed, in 2015/16 the EHRC has already paid the England & Wales Cricket Board £269,355. I have scant interest in sport myself, so forgive my ignorance if I have this wrong. But people from India or Pakistan or of West Indian extraction hardly need any encouragement to play cricket, do they? And as for women, the Department of Culture, Media and Sport has already funded the campaign This Girl Can (also encouraging more women to play sports) to the tune of around £10M.

In 2014/15 there were 22 items costing between £30,000 and £50,000. Six of these were for travel expenses, five for office IT, two for IFF Research discussed above, one for premises costs, one for “transition” (internal reorganisation), and one a donation to BIHR, as also discussed above. The remaining six items were as follows.

Firstly we have Bray Leino Ltd, a PR and marketing company who received, over the two years 2014/15 and 2015/16, a total of £224,453 from the EHRC. You discover all you need to know about this Company from the following boast by their ‘Head of Social’, Paul Trueman,

I wanted to create a real fundraising page for a fictional character in The Archers, who was trapped in an abusive marriage. The twist was that we would raise money for real women, because all the money would go to the charity Refuge. As I set up the page and it asked me to set a target, I (wildly optimistically, I thought) selected £1000. Ten weeks later I’m looking at the largest single donation Refuge has ever received: a sum fast approaching £140,000.”

Well done, that man. He turned a misandric drama plot into funding for a real life misandric organisation. And he’s so proud of himself. The amount he raised, incidentally, would not cover the salary of the CEO of Refuge (Sandra Horley – she receives £180,000 pa). Mr Trueman clearly has no idea of the wealth of the refuge industry. (An income of approximately £300M per annum in the UK incidentally, making even the EHRC look poor). You can see why the EHRC might be able to make use of Bray Leino.

Next up is LSE Enterprises, who received over the two years 2014/15 and 2015/16, a total of £141,300 from the EHRC. They have a history of reviewing the impact of government policy on issues of interest to the EHRC, such as this example.

Next the Mersey Care NHS Trust, who received £37,370. The sort of work funded is explained here. Seems fair enough, this one. (That’s the first time I’ve said that).

Next there was BRAP – “a think fair tank, inspiring and leading change to make public, private and voluntary sector organisations fit for the needs of a more diverse society. brap offers tailored, progressive and common sense approaches to equalities training, consultancy and community engagement issues“. So, you can see why the EHRC would fund them (£70,625 over two years). Progressive diversity – what could go wrong?

Then there was £35,000 to Liverpool John Moores University. I believe this was probably for an on-line training resource for schools to assist them in working with disabled pupils. Fair enough. And finally there was £42,275 to the Welsh National Centre for Social Research.

So, out of the most expensive 42 items in 2014/15, how many were worthwhile activities, not just overheads or ideologically or politically driven agendas? Perhaps two or three – of the cheaper ones.

Year 2015/16

Financial data for 2015/16 is included in the Table, above. Categories A, B, C, D, L and M, which account for “actual issues”, sum to £5.16M out of a total cost of the EHRC to the taxpayer of around £23M. Better than the two preceding years but still only 22.4% of total cost was spent on “issues”.

There were 15 individual items of expenditure costing over £100,000. These reveal nothing new. Seven relate to premises, two to IT costs, four to the rugby and cricket initiatives discussed above, and two to IFF research, also discussed already.

There were 22 individual items of expenditure in the range £50,000 to £100,000. There is scarcely a real issue represented. Three relate to rugby and cricket, as discussed above, nine relate to premises costs, three to IT costs, two to grants to BIHR and one a payment to the Office for National Statistics. The remaining recipients were as follows.

The College of Policing received in total £180,950. I believe this is in association with developing a new training for “stop and search” to tackle unconscious bias.

The company 23red received in total £124,878 having now picked up the lead for the EHRC’s programme on pregnancy and maternity discrimination.

The Institute for Employment Studies received a total of £174,822. Areas in which this Institute has been involved with the EHRC include gender diversity in senior management and Boards, gender-based pay reporting, and under-representation of gender and race in apprenticeships. (Actually women have outnumbered men in apprenticeships by typically 12%  for the last 6 years, and prior to that there was approximate parity).

Finally, £70,000 went to law firm Radcliffes le Brasseur in connection with legal challenges under the 2010 Equalities Act relating to gender and employment.

Impressed with the value for money?

Finance Summary

The only payments relating specifically to men were two to Families Need Fathers, in 2010/11 and 2011/12, and one to the YMCA in 2010/11. The EHRC have spent nearly five times more in the last two years encouraging women and minorities into rugby and cricket than they have spent on all men’s issues in six years.

It is difficult to give an accurate impression of all the recipients of EHRC funding. The above histogram resulting from numbCruncher’s FoI enquiry is probably the best indication. A list of all recipients over the last six years (2010 – 2016) can be found here. (This relates to recipients in the categories Human Rights, Equality of Opportunity, Legal, Research, Disability, Grants and Discretionary Programme). It is clear that the areas favoured by the EHRC are those conforming to the progressive / feminist / identity political agenda. Male issues are ignored.

Even if one were in agreement with the areas chosen for funding and campaigning, the fact remains that the EHRC is staggeringly profligate. About half their funding goes on staff salaries. Adding all premises, office, IT, expenses, admin and management costs means that, over the last three years, only about 15% of the cost of the EHRC was expended on equality and human rights issues.

Comments on the latest EHRC report, “Socio-economic Equality and Human Rights Commission; Updated submission to the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights in advance of the public examination of the UK’s implementation of ICESCR

It is convenient to focus on the Recommendations section. I have selected just a few on which to pass comment.

Recommendation 6: Impact of social security reforms on women in the UK

The EHRC recommends that the UK Government….conducts a further equality impact assessment, which fully considers the effects of this additional reduction to the benefits received by women, and sets out comprehensive strategies to mitigate any projected disproportionate and unjustified impacts…..and continues to monitor and report on the roll-out of Universal Credit and the impact that it is having on women, in particular whether it has resulted in reduced independent income received by women in poorer households.”

Does the possibility of cuts affecting men disproportionately simply not arise in their minds – or is it rather that they don’t care if men are affected disproportionately?

I have made no study of the benefits system (it’s on my list), but I question what “disproportionate” means. If cuts are in proportion to current benefits, they might seem to “disproportionately” affect women simply because women receive more benefits.

Recommendation 19: Violence against women and girls (VAWG)

NHS England should prioritise and provide greater investment in tackling VAWG.”

Groan…I don’t have to go over this ground again, do I? If you are not acquainted with the truth about domestic violence – and, indeed, about violence generally – in particular male victimisation, then here is one source for you to look at. In brief it goes like this: violence against males just doesn’t matter; only violence against females matters. It’s that simple.

Recommendation 22: Working conditions – low pay and agency workers

The EHRC recommends that the UK Government monitors the impact of the new National Living Wage on the proportion of women in low-paid work and the gender pay gap. Where adverse impacts are identified, develop actions to mitigate these.”

Because only women are in low paid jobs? But, below the age of 40, the average hourly pay for full time workers is virtually the same for men and women, whilst, for part time work, women have on average a higher hourly pay rate. Over the age of forty men earn more because they work longer hours and have worked full time without a break for more years. The main difference between men and women in low paid jobs is that men’s jobs are more often dirty, laborious and unpleasant. If the EHRC drives actions to enhance pay specifically for women, then it is deliberately driving inequality.

Recommendation 23: Working conditions – Equal pay in the UK

In order to guarantee access to just and favourable conditions of work on a non-discriminatory basis, as required by Article 7 ICESCR, and recommended by UN CESCR, the EHRC recommends that the UK Government takes steps to…tackle the persistent gender pay gap, including by….facilitating access to all jobs on a more flexible basis to allow all parents to share childcare equitably without compromising their future careers.”

This is a tacit admission that the so-called gender pay gap is due primarily to childcare issues leading to decreased female working hours. The objective being pursued by the EHRC here is nothing to do with unfairness or what people (of either sex) want – it is simply social engineering in pursuance of their own, i.e., feminist, political agenda.

Recommendation 26: Working conditions – junior doctors’ contracts in England

In order to demonstrate that the new contracts of employment for junior doctors in England do not reduce the protection of just and favourable conditions of work to which they are entitled under Article 7 ICESCR, the EHRC recommends that the UK Government:

As a matter of good practice, extends its impact assessment of the junior doctors contracts to include the impact on the implementation of Article 7 ICESCR, including the effects of changes to doctors who work part time, who have responsibilities as carers, and who take maternal, parental and other leave

The new contract does not violate Article 7 of ICESCR, since the latter requires only that, “Fair wages and equal remuneration for work of equal value without distinction of any kind, in particular women being guaranteed conditions of work not inferior to those enjoyed by men, with equal pay for equal work.”

Demonstrates that it has made every effort to use its maximum available resources in an effort to address and eliminate any disproportionate adverse impact on women, including by setting out its assessment of alternative and less discriminatory courses of action and the factors taken into account to balance the objectives of the contract against its differential impact on women, and,

Ensures the new contract of employment for junior doctors does not unlawfully indirectly discriminate against some doctors, and that it properly considers and monitors the potential impacts of the contract on equality of opportunity.”

What is the new junior doctors’ contract all about? The government is trying to get better value for money out of NHS doctors. The government is using the issue of weekend hospital admissions as a focus of their concern, whether this be merely a pretext or a genuine concern. The strategy, bluntly put, is an attack on part time working by making this less attractive financially than it was. Since more women doctors work part time, this will disproportionately affect women – a fact that is declared, with commendable honesty, in the contract. So – the new contract issue is a gender issue. The government knew that it would be, and the EHRC is responding accordingly.

But note the curious inconsistency between this issue and the EHRC/feminist position on the gender pay gap. Their approach to the latter is to attempt to facilitate more working hours from women, and perhaps fewer from men. Yet the new doctors’ contract is an example of just this – an encouragement to work full time rather than part time – and it’s not proving popular.

Recommendation 27: Working conditions – pregnancy and maternity discrimination

In order to strengthen the implementation of the right to work and the right to just and favourable working conditions of pregnant women and new mothers…..the UK, Scottish and Welsh Governments should….work in partnership with the EHRC and businesses to identify effective interventions that enable employers to manage and make best use of the talent and experience of pregnant women and new mothers, and to ensure that employers are aware of and comply with their legal obligations.”

I have already addressed this – it’s another lever to get more working hours out of women.

Recommendation 29: Right to education

Schools in England should be required to collect data on identity-based bullying across all the protected characteristics, to monitor progress and report to the local authority, and

Personal, Social and Health Education should be included as a statutory subject, part of the National Curriculum in England.”

This is the single most infuriating feature of this report. In their Is Britain Fairer report of October 2015, the EHRC were finally obliged to notice that poor white boys are the most disadvantaged demographic in terms of school educational attainment. And yet here we are a few months later and does this issue feature in their list of 32 Recommendations? Of course not. Spending millions on encouraging women to play rugby and stirring up discontent amongst pregnant women is their priority.  I have excoriated the EHRC’s Is Britain Fairer report previously, here.

And as for “Personal, Social and Health Education“, along with sex and relationship education, and universal ‘education’ on VAWG which would become obligatory under the Istanbul Convention, these are intended to deliver Yvette Cooper’s dream of boys raised as ‘confident feminists’.

Recommendation 30: Access to further and higher education

In order to ensure that higher education is equally accessible to all in line with its obligations under Article 13 ICESCR, and as part of its strategy to improve access, participation and success in higher education, the UK Government should:

Review its equality analysis of the impact of increases to tuition fees to fully consider the effect of further increases on particular groups of students, particularly mature and female students and those with dependent children. If adverse impacts are identified, the UK Government should set out ways to mitigate these.

Monitor the impact of the changes to student financing on the participation and attainment of female, single parent, disabled and mature students and those from ethnic minorities. Where adverse impacts are identified, it should review its policies or identify concrete actions to mitigate these impacts.

Neither this report nor the Is Britain Fairer report even mention the diminishing attendance at university by men. Instead, whilst claiming to “ensure that higher education is equally accessible to all” the emphasis is placed, as always, on females.  And yet the truth, as stated by the head of UCAS, Mary Curnock Cook, is that, “women in the UK are now 35% more likely to go to university than young men, and 52% more likely when both sexes are from disadvantaged backgrounds“. This serious, and growing, disparity is being deliberately airbrushed out of public view in the service of the feminist supremacy objective.

Recommendation 31: Access to justice

The UK Government should ensure that changes impacting on access to civil justice, including to the legal aid system, do not undermine access to courts and effective redress for ESCR violations, including by….monitoring the impact of reforms introduced by the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO)….

Reviewing the particular impact of reforms introduced by LASPO on access to justice of disabled people, women, ethnic minorities, non-British nationals and those seeking redress for breaches of Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights in relation to family, housing or immigration cases.

Assessing the impact of new court and tribunal fees in Great Britain and taking steps to address any indirectly discriminatory effects arising from these changes, including the disproportionate impact of employment tribunal fees on women and ethnic minorities.

Delaying the implementation of enhanced court fees for divorce petitions until the results of the current evaluation of employment tribunal fees are known.

Publishing options for ensuring that changes to evidential requirements for domestic violence cases in England and Wales do not obstruct access to justice for victims of domestic violence who have suffered financial abuse.”

It has long been the case that, in custody battles, the mother would obtain legal aid whilst the father, in contesting the case, would be obliged to be self-financing. LAPSO (2012) has made it more difficult for women to obtain legal aid in such cases, and this is the basis of the EHRC’s complaint. The playing field was never level, and the EHRC don’t want it made any leveller.

Recommendation 32: Violence against women and girls in the UK

In order to guarantee the equal enjoyment of men and women to ESCR in line with Article 3 ICESCR, the EHRC recommends that the UK Government continues to work towards ratification and implementation of the Istanbul Convention, including by:

  • ensuring that victims of VAWG have access to adequately funded support services and sufficient legal support
  • implementing the recommendations of the Joint Committee on Human Rights inquiry into VAWG, including by:
  • establishing an adequately resourced full-time coordinating body with a UKwide strategy, action plan and centralised budget to address VAWG, and,
  • implementing a comprehensive, coordinated and properly funded female genital mutilation strategy, whereby relevant organisations are held to account.”

This confirms my previous observation regarding the EHRC’s strong desire to see the Istanbul Convention ratified in the UK. If you don’t know what that is, you need to read this urgently. And as for FGM, well, maybe, one day, with the help of the ever vigilant Alison Saunders, they’ll find someone to convict. If they’d like to turn their attention to male genital mutilation in the meantime, a long list of the names and locations of the mutilators is available to them right now.

 

 

5 thoughts on “The EHRC

  1. Groan

    Another excellent piece. The EHRC supposedly combined the previous commissions including that on Disability. Since the amalgamation the Disability issues raised are minimal. One cannot help but think this is connected with the fact that many of those issues affect men as much as women and indeed in younger age cohorts males are the majority of those with more severe disabilities (connected of course to injury at work and in sports etc. as well as servicemen). It is indeed startling that they have entered the Junior Doctors dispute as that is on behalf of the best paid profession in public funding. Backed by the BMA a group that hardly need any assistance ! On Gender pretty clearly the attainment and indeed “exclusion” data is so clearly gendered that the sheer numbers should prompt action.

    Reply
  2. William Gruff

    Our forebears were warned . Blame them for the mess we are in and hope that those who must sort out the mess we must bequeath to them have sufficient electoral clout to repeal all anti discrimination and equality and diversity legislation.

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  3. Tim

    Thank you so much for doing the work to generate this piece, as with all your others. I share them frequently.

    Reply
  4. Paul

    Your diligence and persistence are a credit to you.

    This article highlights the bigotry and wilful ignorance that lie at the heart of third wave feminism. I do know that invoking Godwin’s Law is poor form, but if we substituted ‘Aryrans’ for ‘women’ in your extracts, what would be our response to the sentiments expressed?

    Revulsion, horror and condemnation. The real horror is the casual acceptance of prejudice, that we are so inured to misandry that we no longer notice it.

    Reply

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