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Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council (TMBC) have taken an important step towards tackling socio-economic inequality.

Tameside Council has become the latest local authority in Greater Manchester to voluntarily adopt the Socio-economic Duty, supported by Greater Manchester Poverty Action Group, providing them with a powerful new tool to understand, address, and reduce inequalities in local communities. 

TMBC commented:

“The driving force behind choosing to adopt the Socioeconomic Duty at this time was simple. Up and down the country, local authorities and communities are grasping with an unprecedented cost of living crisis, an economic squeeze that the Bank of England predicts will be the longest in a century, and the likelihood of a new round of austerity. Tameside has not been immune to these challenges.”

The socio-economic duty requires public bodies to consider the way in which their decisions increase or decrease inequalities that result from socio-economic disadvantage.  The UK Government has not commenced enforcement of the duty in England, although progress has been made in Scotland, with the Scottish Parliament enacting the Fairer Scotland Duty in 2018. 

Inequality harms physical and mental health, self-esteem, happiness, sense of trust and civic participation. Inequality is both a cause and a result of human rights abuses. NTCA’s important decision is an important reminder that inequality is not inevitable, and can be tackled by public authorities. 

Just Fair continues to work with councils across England to support implementation of the duty.