Higher Education and Research Bill, Second Reading, House of Lords

As the body tasked by statute with enforcing the Public Sector Equality Duty, the Commission is primarily concerned that the Higher Education and Research Bill does not adequately take account of the existing obligations placed on current higher education institutions (HEIs) by the Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED) and may be in conflict with some of those obligations.

In particular:      

  1. Requirements placed on HEIs to publish equality data and to have participation plans overlap with obligations under the PSED. This risks creating confusion and duplication for HEI providers and regulators regarding how these requirements interrelate and the extent to which compliance with one does or does not constitute compliance with the other.
  2. While the Bill’s proposed requirements overlap significantly, their narrower and more specific focus is weaker than obligations under the PSED. This risks unhelpfully undermining compliance with the PSED.

Last updated: 07 Dec 2016