Blog by Michael Moore MCIPR, Head of Communications Cheshire East Council
Doing something about diversity
Do you celebrate difference?
Are you passionate about diversity?
Do you want to help make our profession fairer, building working relationships where everyone’s voice can be heard and their unique contributions are valued?
Back in July 2022 we invited local public service communication professionals across the UK to respond to a survey that asked about equality, diversity and inclusion in our profession. This is part of our commitment to create an inclusive future for public sector communications. Representing, valuing and celebrating diverse backgrounds and experiences.
We received 733 responses – including from all UK nations and regions and all sectors, including councils, police, fire, health and local government agencies.
A huge thank you to everyone who took the time to respond.
Since July we have been analysing the data. The number and nature of responses show that there is a genuine appetite out there to understand and improve diversity in our profession.
Now we need to take the next step. Can you help improve the experience and opportunities for people in or joining our profession who experience obstacles based on their characteristics? Do you have valuable experience, a personal or professional perspective and a little time to spare?
LGcomms is inviting you to join a working group to develop and deliver actions based on this research. Our first meeting will be meeting in July via MSTeams. If you would like to help, please email email@example.com to get involved.
Key headlines from the survey include:
- A significantly higher proportion of people who identify as female work in the profession in comparison to the general population
- Individuals identifying as white/white British as over-represented. Levels of (under)representation of non-white/white British ethnic identities appear to vary significantly in different parts of the country
- While the proportion of respondents identifying as having a disability roughly matches the general population, this proportion decreases as career progresses
- More people whose gender identity is different than their birth gender work in the profession in comparison to the general population
The results of the survey provide a fairly clear picture, in many respects, of the diversity of our profession, and suggest areas for action. However, in some other areas, the results suggest a more complex situation. More work will be required to understand the interdependencies between characteristics, socio-economic background, location and career stage, which, when understood in more detail, may help us to ensure that we’re doing the right things to increase inclusion, reduce injustice and celebrate our differences.
So, the working group will develop ideas to increase and promote diversity based on what we know, while also working to understand in more detail the complex drivers and obstacles that impact on individuals’ ability to enter, progress and thrive in our profession.
If you think you can bring something to this conversation, then please do get in touch. And please pass this message on to colleagues and contacts who may have an interest. LGcomms is keen to work with individuals and organisations that share our commitment to creating an inclusive future for public sector communications.