Wealden District Council
You are using an unsupported version of Internet Explorer.
Parts of our website may display incorrectly or not work at all. Please consider downloading an up to date browser such as Chrome or Firefox.

Wealden leads the way by publishing ethnicity and disability pay gap data

Publish Date: 25 March 2024

New pay gap data reveals improvements as Wealden District Council continues work to eradicate disparities.

blue background with the words equal pay at the top. the image in the middle is half of a stick figure split in half. Half is a woman and half is a man

And for the first time, the council has also published disability pay gap data and ethnicity pay gap data.

The headline gender pay gap figure at 31 March 2023 has decreased from 15.5% to 12.5%, which highlights the positive work done to narrow the gender pay gap. That includes initiatives such as a free to access coaching network for all staff, a new leadership development programme for those new to or aspiring to management and family friendly policies from neo-natal care through to menopause support.

The data notes that the council continues to see more women than men achieving the highest grades of performance. At Wealden, men and women doing the same job receive the same rate of pay. The pay gap that remains is due to flexible and part time working hours and patterns the council offers which appeal more especially to women.

The council is continuing to introduce activities to reduce the pay gap further.

The headline ethnicity pay gap is 14.5% in favour of staff from ethnic minority backgrounds (non-white). This is welcome news, and the council is now focused on increasing the representation of staff from minority ethnic backgrounds to reflect the communities it serves more closely. The headline disability pay gap is 9.4% – a positive report for the first disability gap reporting data but recognising there is more work to do to give staff confidence to proactively choose to disclose a disability at work so the council can better understand how to serve and support the needs of disabled colleagues.

Councillor Greg Collins, Alliance for Wealden (Green Party) and lead councillor for Finance and HR, said, “The decision to publish our ethnicity and disability pay gaps can only be a good thing. The council is committed to being an inclusive employer. To be an employer of choice, and a role model for other businesses in the district, we need to live up to our promise to our communities to lead with integrity and transparency.

“While the make-up of council staff is not yet fully aligned with the demography of our resident population, since taking over leadership of the council in May 2023, the Alliance for Wealden has been and remains determined to be truly guided by considerations of equity and inclusion. As we set out in our Equalities Framework – which is the first of its kind for Wealden – encouraging diverse contributions is essential to our aims.

“We have committed to being honest and open with staff and residents about our intentions and how we will take responsibility for achieving them and publication of our ethnicity and disability pay gaps on a voluntary basis is one way to do so. Our chief executive and senior leadership team at the council are proactive and directly involved in driving this agenda, through championing EDI across all council services and supporting staff to have frank, open conversations about EDI, both to discuss where things are going well and where things still need to change.”

The Equality Act 2010 Regulations 2017 requires employers with 250 or more employees to publish statutory calculations every year showing how large the pay gap is between their male and female staff based on a series of calculations to provide a fair and accurate summary of pay.

More information about the council’s approach to equalities can be found at https://www.wealden.gov.uk/information-about-the-council/equality-and-diversity-at-wealden/equalities-objectives/