These ‘equality impact assessments’, introduced in the 2010 Equality Act, involve assessing the likely or actual effects of policies on people in respect of disability, gender and racial equality.
Last year the Prime Minister David Cameron announced he would stop Whitehall departments carrying out official tests to ensure that government policies comply with equality laws.
In evidence to the Communities, Equality and Local Government Committee, Huw Lewis told Assembly Members the Welsh Government remains firmly committed to the equality impact assessments and will not be following the UK Government.
Speaking after the committee, Huw Lewis said:
“Improving fairness and creating a more equal society is vital. While some may deride equality impact assessments, they are an important way of finding out how our policies affect all parts of society.”
“We have no plans to follow Westminster and repeal this duty as it helps us address inequality and disadvantage. They are a sign of progress and now is not the time to take a step back but continue to consider how the policies we make affect all in society. This is an issue of transparency, fairness and decency.”