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Corporate Plan 2022-2025 – Consultative Draft

We are pleased to publish this Draft Corporate Plan for consultation. We aim to use our powers and duties in combination to secure changes to policy, practices and procedures to combat discrimination and promote equality in Northern Ireland.

This draft sets out five strategic priorities which we have developed to guide our work over the period April 2022 – March 2025. We would very much welcome your feedback and comments on these – your views are important and will be considered as we work to finalise the Plan early next year.

We recognise that the Corporate Plan, as a framework, needs to be a dynamic and flexible document. We will review the strategic priorities each year, to ensure, on an annual basis, that our work reflects and takes account of new developments and any changes to the context in which we work.


How we want to make a difference

Working for a stronger legal and policy framework for equality

  • Increasing awareness, advocacy and action on the need for equality law reform through targeted communications, political engagement and partnership working - focusing on the need to increase protection against discrimination for individuals in areas such as on grounds of age in accessing goods, facilities and services; race equality law; hate crime; gender pay reporting; and extending protection from religious discrimination to teachers.
  • Influencing the Programme for Government and engaging with Departments, Assembly Committees and relevant public bodies to influence the design and delivery of key social and equality strategies, including through partnerships with key stakeholders.
  • Encouraging high levels of public leadership on equality and good relations issues.
  • Working to encourage the production and availability of improved equality data available across equality grounds to help promote equality and tackle inequality in Northern Ireland.
  • Utilising any opportunities presented by the United Nations Conventions on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), the on Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD), and on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) and other international frameworks and related processes to lever change.
  • Completing a ‘Measuring Equality in Northern Ireland’ project to provide an updated evidence base on equality and using the results to inform and support action for change.
  • Increasing public awareness of ‘cradle to grave’ inequalities across equality groups.

Using our powers to combat discrimination and promote equality of opportunity

  • Deploying our full range of advisory and enforcement powers in a strategic, coordinated and timely way to challenge discrimination and promote equality of opportunity and affirmative action/ action for change.
  •  Supporting high profile strategic casework demonstrating impacts wider than individual decisions and settlements.
  • Providing advice on the public sector equality duties to assist public authorities to implement their equality schemes effectively.
  • Deploying our investigatory powers to best strategic effect, including using our powers under Schedule 9 – paragraphs 10 and 11 – to investigate compliance with the Section 75 duties.
  • Maintaining employer and public authority compliance with FETO monitoring and Article 55 Review requirements.
  • Providing advisory support for employers and service providers to promote good practice and support employers to make changes to their policies and practices.

Safeguarding our rights and protections post Brexit

  • Monitoring and reporting on compliance with the Article 2 commitment by Government.
  • Promoting the mainstreaming of Brexit-related equality and good relations considerations in legislative development and policymaking.
  • Increasing understanding and awareness of the Article 2 commitment and the Commission’s role and remit among key stakeholders.
  • Timely and strategic use of the Commission’s enforcement powers that results in a satisfactory outcome.
  • Maintaining effective joint working with our partners NI Human Rights Commission and Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission.

Promoting equal access to and equal opportunities for all at work

  • Seeking improvements in workplace equality and working environments for target groups – disabled people, women, and people from Black and minority ethnic communities.
  • Working with key partners to shape Government strategies and promote improved public policy on employment and actions on employability.
  • Increasing awareness of inequalities in employment, in the context of COVID-19, amongst key decision-takers and opinion formers.
  • Securing support for change and improvements in employer practices in target workplaces to support and retain target groups in the workplace.
  • Promote awareness of employee rights and employer responsibilities and strategically challenge discriminatory practices in recruitment, employment and harassment.
  • Keeping patterns and trends under review and raising awareness of trends, given the enduring importance of FETO monitoring.

Addressing inequalities in educational attainment and tackling bullying

  • Working with others for an Independent Review of Education Report with a strong equality dimension.
  • Seeking action by the Department of Education (DE) and the Education Authority (EA) to identify and address inequalities in attainment and access.
  • Working with stakeholders to ensure schools are supported to implemented and monitoring anti-bullying legislation.
  • Promoting awareness of educational inequalities and building support for change.

Do you agree?

See how we chose these areas, the outcomes we’re looking for and the actions and delivery needed to make them happen - Download our draft corporate plan (pdf)

You have seen our strategic priority areas for our next Corporate Plan. We are keen to seek your views and ask that you consider the following questions to help us finalise our three-year Corporate Plan?
  • Are the draft strategic priorities likely to help us make a difference in the coming period?
  • Is there anything missing that you would like to see us working on?
  • What areas of our work do we do well and need to continue working on?
  • What areas of our work do we need to improve on?

Your comments and feedback are welcomed!

We want to make sure it is as easy as possible for you to respond - choose a way that suits you best:
  • online response form
  • email: 
  • phone: 028 90 500 552
  • letter addressed to Corporate Plan Consultation, c/o Louise Conlon, Equality Commission for Northern Ireland, Equality House, Shaftesbury Square, Belfast  BT2 7DP
  • or you can arrange a meeting with us

All information received will be compiled, stored and used in line with the General Data Protection Regulations. Read our privacy statement

Over the next 12 weeks we will be asking questions and encouraging discussions about our plans on social media. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Linked In to see the latest feedback and to take part in our online surveys.

If you need this information in an alternative format, or to submit your response in a different way, please contact us using the details above.

The closing date for responses is Friday 25 February 2022

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