Collection: Tackling inequalities

Tackling inequalities remains a major challenge for local government around the world. Diversity in people, backgrounds, beliefs and abilities creates beauty in communities, however it also often leads to inequality which local authorities are then faced with tackling.

This collection brings together LGIU’s content on tackling inequalities at the local level. It presents resources across a range of different inequality topics including, gender, housing and homelessness, poverty, youth and health. This collection will provide food for thought, guidance and global best practice examples to anyone with an interest or role in tackling inequalities.

Homeless man sitting against a brown wall. Credit: Photo by Mitchell Haindfield Flickr via Compfight

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Local government finance 💰

This edition highlights innovative practice and shares resources to help you make the best of your budget. We go beyond the bottom line with findings from LGIU’s Local Democracy Research Centre, which is currently exploring local government funding and finance systems from around the world.

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Gender and women's safety


Local government's role in the epidemic of violence against women

The United Nations General Assembly has designated today (November 25) as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. The important question is, how can this translate into action at a global level? As local authority members know all too well, it all begins with action at a local level. Read here.

Community action to tackle violence against women and girls

Women’s safety from male violence impacts all women’s lives. In this article, Emma Moseley Policy Officer at Trafford Council explains how GreaterSport’s Right to the Streets is aiming to make streets and public spaces safer for women and girls. Read here.

Global Local: Violence against women and girls

This edition of Global Local looks at how local governments, organisations and individuals are tackling violence and abuse perpetrated against women and girls. Read here.

In Conversation With Cllr Connor McManus About Tackling Gender Based Violence at Midlothian Council

In this edition of ‘In Conversation With’ we spoke with Midlothian Council’s Equalities Champion, Cllr Connor McManus, about the council seeking White Ribbon accreditation, its work against gender based violence and the role of men in preventing violence against women. Read here.

Local Government: By Women, For Women

In this briefing we look at two successful local government programmes: one engaging women in politics by encouraging political participation and improved perception of female politicians; and one providing young women with tools to support confidence, resilience and leadership in all aspects of their lives. Read here.

Planning for inclusivity: How Vienna built a gender-equal city

Low visibility of women’s experiences in the male-dominated field of planning can shape our environments to fit male norms, but it doesn’t have to be this way. LGIU’s Kat McManus writes on the benefits of applying a gender lens to planning and explores how Vienna became a role model for their application of this approach. Read here.

Poverty and homelessness

Photo by Ev on Unsplash

Five years of the Homelessness Reduction Act: has it made a difference?

The Homelessness Reduction Act is five years old, but homelessness in England is going up, not down. Is the Act partly to blame or are councils doing as much as they can to assist people, thereby limiting rises in homelessness? This briefing investigates. Read here.

The shocking impacts of poverty on the physical health of children and families

In 2019-22, it was estimated that 24% of children in Scotland were living in relative poverty after housing costs. This briefing looks at the overall picture and the most recent research on how poverty affects children’s physical health. Read here.

Child poverty and low-income families

Child poverty has risen in every Scottish local authority over the past six years and around 1 in 4 children in Scotland live in relative poverty. This briefing sets out the situation in Scotland and explores some of the ways that local authorities are tackling this pressing issue. Read here.

Illicit drug use and homelessness: how Canada and the UK are dealing with a growing crisis

This briefing explores the connection between illicit drug use and homelessness, using Canada and the UK’s management strategies, in dealing with the growing crisis, as a case study. Read here.

Listening to tenants: the changing face of social housing regulation in England

Tenants are at the heart of a new system of regulating social landlords in England with inspections due to start in 2024. In preparation, councils and housing associations should be aware of how they will consult tenants about the quality of homes and other customer service. This new briefing explores the circumstances. Read here.

The ‘Housing First’ approach to homelessness

This briefing looks at the Housing First approach to homelessness. It highlights how, with its focus on rough sleeping, it has changed the approach of the UK government and local authorities in tackling the problems of people with high and complex needs. The evidence highlights some success. Read here.

Children and young people

Youth Justice: Anti-Social Behaviour Action Plan and response

This briefing looks at the recently released UK Government’s Anti-Social Behaviour Action Plan for England and Wales and the implications it holds for children and young people along with some related publications. Read here.

Sharing lessons from Ireland and Spain on actions to tackle child poverty

This briefing explains the fundamentals of the EU Child Guarantee, compares the national plans from Ireland and Spain, and suggests some areas of action for local authorities everywhere to address child poverty. Read here.

Children in poverty: Work and Pensions Committee report on families with no recourse to public funds

This briefing deals with the Work and Pensions Committee’s report on children living in families with no recourse to public funds (NRPF). Many non-UK nationals with leave to remain in the UK cannot claim the majority of social security benefits available to UK citizens. Read here.

Children and young people’s mental health today – embattled and in need of council support

A child or young person’s mental health can have long-term implications. This briefing explores some examples of programmes and initiatives, set up by Scotland’s local authorities, to help children and young people with their mental health. Read here.

A crucial autumn awaits youth services

A review of UK Government spending across England’s youth sector is expected to be part of the spending review published in late October. LGIU Associate, Mark Upton, previews the issues it’s considering. Read here.

Generation Covid: The impact on young people in the UK – Youth Affairs APPG

The report ‘Generation COVID: The economic impact of COVID-19 on young people in the United Kingdom’, published in May 2021 by the UK All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Youth Affairs, puts a spotlight on the economic impact of the pandemic on young people and calls for better financial, educational and employment support for young people post-Covid. Read here.

Health, mental health and wellbeing

Photo by Emma Simpson on Unsplash

Supporting disabled people into work and out of poverty

This case study briefing highlights the link between disability and poverty. It considers the policy response of both the UK government and the Scottish government, as well as the role of local government, in tackling the challenges of addressing this correlation and improving the livelihoods of disabled citizens. Read here.

Global Local: Health inequalities

This Global Local newsletter focuses on global health inequalities. The Covid-19 pandemic highlighted and exacerbated health inequalities, significantly impacting many people but also creating a new impetus to address the root causes more comprehensively than before. Read here.

Leave no one behind: State of health and health inequalities in Scotland today

This briefing highlights how the Scottish Government approach to public health needs to be more focused and supported with resources locally. It also covers the ‘implementation gap’ and advocates for more achievable short term goals to complement the national performance framework. Read here.

Health inequalities, Covid-19 and Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities groups

This explainer is part of a Local Democracy Research Centre paper on global health inequalities. The pandemic has highlighted the structural disadvantage and systemic discrimination faced by Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities groups in the UK and globally. Read here.

Global Local: Mental Health Support

In this issue of Global Local, we’re looking at how local authorities can best support the mental health of the communities they serve. Read here.

Green spaces and mental health – a personal perspective from Finland

The importance of green spaces – and blue spaces – for our mental health has become ever more pronounced in the last few years. In this article, Suvi Loponen reflects on some of her personal observations of the importance of green spaces and the differences between Finland and Scotland. Read here.