Equalities Policy: Evidence Base

Women and Equalities – in the House of Commons at on 13 January 2021.

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Photo of Tom Randall Tom Randall Conservative, Gedling

What steps she is taking to ensure that her policies are informed by robust evidence.

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 can and must have an equality agenda that is driven by evidence, and that is why we have launched an equality data project, which will look at the life paths of individuals across this country and deliver hard data about the barriers that people face.

Photo of Tom Randall Tom Randall Conservative, Gedling

Over the Christmas break, I was disappointed to read comments in The Guardian by Halima Begum of the Runnymede Trust, who ridiculously claimed:

“I think the government’s long-term plan is to work up white nationalism for the next elections”.

Does my right hon. Friend agree that not only should that insulting thinking have no place in the setting of Government policy, but it should have no place in mainstream discourse?

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

I agree with my hon. Friend—these comments are appalling. They reflect an attitude on the left of politics that says, “If you’re not from an oppressed group, you’re not entitled to an opinion”, and I think that is fundamentally wrong. I believe that equality is for everyone, and I am not going to let this debate be dominated by a few campaign groups.