Agenda and minutes

Agenda and minutes

Venue: Town Hall, Watford

Contact: Ian Smith/Alan Garside  Email: legalanddemocratic@watford.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies for absence

Minutes:

There were two changes of membership for the meeting; Councillor S Johnson replaced Councillor M Watkin and Councillor S Williams replaced Councillor M Mills.

 

2.

Disclosure of interests (if any)

Minutes:

There were no disclosures of interest.

 

3.

Minutes

The minutes of the meeting held on 26 February 2015 to be submitted and signed.

 

Copies of the minutes of this meeting are usually available seven working days following the meeting.

 

(All minutes are available on the Council’s website.)

 

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 26th February 2015 were submitted and signed.

 

4.

Annual statement of workforce monitoring pdf icon PDF 43 KB

    Report of the Head of Human Resources detailing the profile of Watford Borough Council workforce from 1st April 2014 to 31st March 2015.

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    The Committee received a report of the Head of Human Resources which detailed the profile of Watford Borough Council’s

     workforce from 1 April 2014 to 31 March 2015.

     

    Watford Borough Council was committed to equality and diversity across the full spectrum of its services and in its role as

    an employer.  The commitment was articulated in its equality objective and associated action plan which identified key

    actions the council would take to ensure equalities for its workforce and that it reflected the community it served.  Watford’s

    commitment went beyond its statutory obligations and reinforced its corporate priority to ensure equality and diversity was

    at the heart of everything it did.

     

    The Head of Human Resources introduced the report to the Committee. She explained that it was a requirement to produce

    the report each year.  She said that overall, performance was good; particularly in relation to recruiting a younger workforce

    where various initiatives, including apprenticeship schemes, had proved fruitful.  However, the Council was not hitting all

    targets - for example, in relation to staff and job applicants not completing data on protected characteristics.  She

    wondered whether staff might consider this information to be confidential and she explained that new guidance was being

    issued that could increase the provision of the data.  She commented that the matter formed part of a wider national

    picture; with some people considering the data their own business or if disclosed they potentially being treated less

    favourably.  She explained that a number of Councils in Hertfordshire performed better then Watford in this regard and that

    some authorities required the data to be provided compulsorily.  However, Watford Borough Council did not consider this

    to be a sound approach at this stage.  She said that in the future there may be opportunities to improve take up by utilising

     the new website design where it might be easier to require that the information be provided; it would also be helpful to get

    community views on the issue.  Another option would be to conduct a survey on the website. 

     

    Councillor Haley agreed that this was a difficult area.  He made reference to the sexual orientation data where no

    employees had apparently indicated that they were gay.  He considered this to be unusual as this group had historically

    been committed to equality issues.  He felt that it would be a good idea to conduct a survey later in the year but people

    should not be forced to complete this.  He asked the following:

     

    ·        With reference to paragraph 3.2 in the report; whether there was a further breakdown of any additional take up.

    ·        With reference to Table 1 in the report; whether the breakdown of the Watford Borough Council workforce, as compared to the percentage of the local population, was statistically relevant as the small numbers involved may skew the data.  If this was not the case, it may indicate there was a problem with recruitment in certain groups.

    ·        With reference to paragraph 7.1.3 in the report; whether the target of a  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.

 

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