Socio-economic Inequality: Equality Hub

Women and Equalities – in the House of Commons on 22nd July 2020.

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Photo of Jerome Mayhew Jerome Mayhew Conservative, Broadland

What plans she has for the Equality Hub to tackle geographical and socio-economic inequality.

Photo of James Grundy James Grundy Conservative, Leigh

What plans she has for the Equality Hub to tackle geographical and socio-economic inequality.

Photo of Elizabeth Truss Elizabeth Truss The Secretary of State for International Trade and President of the Board of Trade, Minister for Women and Equalities

The Prime Minister has set out his vision to level up and spread opportunity across the country, and the Equality Hub will play an important part in realising that vision by rigorously analysing where the real inequality in Britain is today. It will focus in particular on areas such as geography and social background.

Photo of Jerome Mayhew Jerome Mayhew Conservative, Broadland

Rural poverty is easy to overlook in picturesque areas that other people associate with holidays and a slower pace of life, but it is every bit as hard and destructive for those affected. Can my right hon. Friend advise the House on what action the Government are taking to address rural deprivation?

Photo of Elizabeth Truss Elizabeth Truss The Secretary of State for International Trade and President of the Board of Trade, Minister for Women and Equalities

My hon. Friend makes a good point. We want everybody across the country to benefit from our levelling-up agenda of investing more in transport infrastructure and dealing with educational inequality. We recognise that deprived rural areas can face additional barriers to opportunity. The Equality Hub will analyse the data and look at where that inequality of opportunity is, so that Departments can take measures to address them.

Photo of James Grundy James Grundy Conservative, Leigh

How might northern constituencies, such as my constituency of Leigh, which according to some measures is in the top 20% most deprived constituencies in the country, benefit from the plans my right hon. Friend mentioned earlier?

Photo of Elizabeth Truss Elizabeth Truss The Secretary of State for International Trade and President of the Board of Trade, Minister for Women and Equalities

We want to make sure that no part of our country feels forgotten about, particularly towns and cities in the north and the midlands, such as my hon. Friend’s constituency. I can assure him that we will do everything we can to look at the roots of that geographical inequality and to make sure his constituents have the best opportunities in life.