Saturday, 10 October 2015

Freedom of Information Request to Waltham Forest Coun

Freedom of Information Request to Waltham Forest Council (October 2012)

1. Please send me the information about the nature and description of Waltham Forest Council contracts awarded to Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) businesses in the current year and last three years, including the support provided to BME businesses to win Waltham Forest Council Contracts.
In 2009 LBWF sent a questionnaire to all suppliers that had been used in the previous 2 years  and since then all new suppliers are requested to complete the questionnaire identifying whether they would consider themselves to be BME businesses. The data that we have is therefore only for those companies that chose to complete the questionnaire (it is not mandatory for them to do so in order to be set up as a vendor)

Based on those businesses who completed the voluntary questionnaire, since 30.9.2009 to date LBWF has raised Purchase Orders (i.e has contracted with for the supply of goods/services/works) to 335 vendors who stated that they were BME owned businesses.

2. Please send me the information about the funding allocation and grants to BME voluntary organisations working or based in the London Borough of Waltham Forest ( for the current year and last three years), and indicate the proportion of this funding allocation in relation to all voluntary organisations working or based in the borough.
Please see the attached spreadsheet (voluntary sector funding).  In terms of the last 3 years – we have records for 2010-2011, 2011-2012. We do not have collated information 2009-10. We are including 2012-2013 but would need to highlight that this period is not complete and there are other funding e.g. grants that are still to take place.

2012-2013 –NB as at 26 October 2012)
2011-2012 –
2010-2011 – NB no project information was collated for this period.

3. Please send me the information about proportion of BME staff employed by the Council, especially in the management positions.
HR Scorecard June 2012 attached – Includes details of Minority Ethnic Staff in top 5% of earners.

4. Please send me your report about the complaints from the public in relation to your Equality and Diversity Scheme, including any change or action that may have been taken place in the Council's policies, activities, services as the result of these complaints.
No complaints have been received.

5. Please send me the reports about the implementation of your Equality and Diversity Scheme for the last three years.
This is published on our website. The Equalities Review:

6.Please send me your annual workforce profile report that provides breakdowns of the workforce profile by gender, ethnicity, religion, disability and age and other additional data required by the Equality and Human Rights Commission.
Annual Workforce Profile is published on our website: Under Employment Information, there is a link to the Equality Scorecard. Can be found under this link:
Some examples of current initiatives and on-going work include:
<![if !supportLists]>·         <![endif]>Aspiring Leaders Programme (Year-long Development Programme launched in April 2012) – See attached for details.
<![if !supportLists]>·         <![endif]>The council undertakes regular and routine analysis of its workforce profile through quarterly HR scorecards and an annual equality scorecard
<![if !supportLists]>·         <![endif]>The Councils Equality Plan sets out  a number of equality objectives which it aims to progress, these include objectives on our workforce for example - Ensure the percentage of women, disabled staff, and black, Asian and minority ethnic staff is in line with top-performing London authorities across all tiers of the Council’s workforce; Eliminate bullying and harassment in the workplace.
The Council undertakes benchmarking exercises on how the profile of its workforce compares with other local authorities, this includes the top 5% of minority ethnic earners  and Waltham Forest is in the top quartile for London Boroughs

7.What strategy to increase the proportion of black people personnel if it is under-represented in your workforce ?
There is no overall under-representation of BME staff in the Council, as at June 2012 the overall % of BME staff is 53.2%, this compares well with our BME population locally (Waltham Forest) which is 47%.

I trust that the above satisfies your enquiry.  If you have any queries about this email, please contact me.  Please remember to quote the reference number above in any future communications.

Under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, you have the right to complain about the Council’s response to your request for information. If you wish to pursue such a complaint, please do so within 28 days from the date of this letter and ask for a review of the Council’s decision.  Please write to: The Information Officer, Complaints Team, Room 104, Waltham Forest Town Hall, Walthamstow E17 4JF, or email .  Please mark your request clearly as “Request for Review”.

If after receiving a response to the review, you remain dissatisfied with the Council’s response, you have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner.  Further information can be obtained via the Information Commissioner’s helpline 0303 123 1113 or their website at: 

Waltham Forest Council
Room 104
Waltham Forest Town Hall
Forest Road
London E17 4JF

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Our Vision and Services

Our vision is of a society where no one should experience discrimination on the grounds of their mental health.

Mental health problems are extremely common across society, with one in four of us experiencing them in any year. Despite being so common, people from all communities will still experience discriminatory attitudes and behaviours that can prevent people from speaking out, seeking support and playing full and active roles in our communities. The impact of mental health stigma and discrimination will vary between communities as mental health has a cultural context that affects the way communities talk about the subject and engage with people who have mental health problems. In some cultures depression, for example, doesn't exist and in others an experience of a mental health problem can be attached to a sense of shame.

For the African and Caribbean communities a key issue is the overrepresentation of young African and Caribbean men in mental health services. Misconceptions and stereotypes have led to a perception that this group is more likely to pose a risk of violent behaviour and, as a result, they are more likely to be treated as inpatients and sectioned when compared to other groups. It is well documented that this has led to a fear of talking about mental health issues more openly and a fear of using mental health services. Research by the Race Equality Foundation (2011) also highlighted fears that discrimination against Black & Minority Ethnic (BME) communities and migrant service users will increase in the austerity climate and whilst commissioning arrangements change.

Our Services

· Provide information, advice, advocacy

· Represent diversity communities in Health Care services, policies and strategies

· Organise training in health and social care in collaboration with local colleges

· Provide human resources ( including interpreters) who are suitable to the diversity communities especially to break language and cultural barriers

· Provides domiciliary care and support

· Provide services such specialised support for people with mental health needs, including people who suffer from short-term memory problems, Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease.

· Provide visits to elderly people and help them with outings and home services

· Participate in local authority and NHS consultations , research events and programmes to voice the needs of diversity communities.

· Increase access to services and rights for disadvantaged people and the most vulnerable of our society

· Help and support unemployed people to look for work, including training and job preparation

· Provide legal advice in a range of issues from on Immigration and Asylum , welfare benefits, housing, health, education, community care, and training, employment, etc.

· Provide advice and guidance, information and practical help so that our service users can access opportunities they are entitled to

· Organise training and other community learning opportunities that provide new skills, increase confidence and motivation

· Support our service users to overcome barriers to learning, employment and training

· Provide support for young people with their education, training, confidence building, employment and social needs.

Objectives of our Diversity Living Programme:

· To promote the inclusion and participation of diversity communities* in integrated care.

· To inform policy, locally and nationally, and assisting in the formulation of effective policies, strategies and good practices in integrated care in order to contribute to improved health outcomes for the people from the diversity communities (e.g. Black and minority ethnic communities) and to ensure health services are able to meet their specific needs.

· To improve the quality of life for diversity people with disability, mental health problems and their families and carers through integrated care by providing inclusive advocacy and information.

· To provide service that enable diversity groups and individuals with disability /elderly and their carers to make the right choice for themselves and have an influence on decisions made about their future.

· To promote the rights of diversity people with disability, their families and carers and make sure their rights are safe and protected.

· To promoting access to information regarding healthcare issues and to raise awareness of the needs of diversity disabled children, young people, older people and their families.

· To promote the rights of older and disabled diversity people, helping them overcome and enable them to participate in decisions about their future

· To provide support and information to those suffering the isolation and loneliness that can be associated with disability and old age

· To fight against mental health stigma in refugee, black and minority ethnic communities and ensure no one should experience discrimination on the grounds of their mental health or disability.

*Diversity communities are older people, disabled people, Black, Asian, refugees, migrants, asylum seekers and other ethnic minorities.