Treasury Committee: Inquiry on an Equal Recovery
Date Posted: Wednesday 8th December 2021
The Women’s Budget Group and Just Fair have submitted a response to the Treasury Select Committee Inquiry on an Equal Recovery in July 2021.
Summary of WBG’s and Just Fair’s response:
The economic impact of the crisis is most affecting people already on low incomes or with less accumulated wealth. This has a profound impact on inequality experienced by Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) people, disabled people, and women.
The pandemic exacerbated existing inequalities that should have been anticipated by the Government, which failed to adequately influence the policy response on employment, welfare, childcare, pregnancy, and maternity. An acknowledgement of this offers the Government an opportunity to learn from mistakes and ensure that equality is mainstreamed in policy development across all Government departments.
When carried out correctly, Equality Impact Assessments (EIAs) are an important tool for understanding how policy impacts different groups. The Treasury should carry out and publish a cumulative impact assessment of financial statements, the Budget every year and of periodic spending reviews. Staff responsible for these impact assessments should be trained in equality impact to ensure that assessments are meaningful.
Plans to build back better must seek to address the structural inequalities that are baked into our economy. Investing in the care sector does not only create low-carbon jobs and better distribute investment around England, but it also means that individual needs are met, that wellbeing is put at the heart of Government policy and that gender inequality is addressed.