A place where people understand, respect and celebrate each other’s differences and nobody's left behind - that's the aim of Oldham Council's new "Building a Fairer Oldham" strategy, agreed by cabinet
The strategy aims to expand on the successful work already happening to tackle unfairness across the borough, building on the hard work and dedication of individuals and organisations committed to equality.
It was produced with input from partners including the council's Equality Advisory Group, communities, Voluntary, Community, Faith, and Social Enterprise (VCFSE) organisations, stakeholders and staff.
Councillor Arooj Shah, Leader of Oldham Council, said: "Oldham is a vibrant and diverse borough, but not everyone has access to the same opportunities.
"I believe our town will only fulfil its collective potential if everyone who lives and works here can reach their own individual potential and are not limited because of who they are or where they live.
"Tackling inequality requires the widest possible ownership, engagement and contribution from organisations and communities across our borough. We need to use all our resources, creativity and commitment if we are to deliver on our shared ambition of a more equitable Oldham; an Oldham where all who live and work comfortably, healthily and happily."
Oldham has a rich history of people from different backgrounds and cultures living and working together - as has been thrown into the spotlight during the Coronavirus pandemic.
However, there are groups of people that are marginalised, and who are more likely to face inequality and discrimination than others.
The aim of the strategy, as the borough recovers from the pandemic, is to tackle inequality and discrimination head-on, setting aspirational targets for improving equality across the borough. This means tackling issues such as the impact of Coronavirus, which has disproportionately affected communities from ethnic minority backgrounds; older people and younger people – the latter being particularly affected by rising unemployment.
The strategy also maps out what specific actions will be taken between now and 2025, to embed equality, diversity and inclusion into all the work the council does.
Fazal Rahim from Oldham Interfaith Forum said: "It has been a pleasure to have been involved in creating the Building a Fairer Oldham strategy.
"People from all faiths have given their time and expertise in shaping this strategy through the Equality Advisory Group, and I'm very glad to see it now endorsed by Cabinet."
The strategy will now be taken to the next full meeting of Oldham Council for formal approval.