Agenda and minutes

Equality and Diversity Forum
Thursday, 14th May, 2009 7.00 pm

Venue: Civic Offices, St Nicholas Way, Sutton, SM1 1EA

No. Item



Estimated time – 2 minutes


Apologies were received from Beau Fadahunsi (Sutton Racial Equality Council) and Andy Wilson (Sutton Centre for Voluntary Services).  Councillor Ruth Dombey apologised that she would have to leave the meeting at 7.45 pm as she was required to attend another meeting but Brother Shafi Chowdhury, Vice-Chair, would chair the meeting.   Apologies were also received from Joanne Warwick for her lateness.




of the meeting held on 12 February 2009 to be approved and signed as a correct record by the Chair.


Estimated time : 5 minutes


The Minutes of the meeting held on 12 February 2009 were approved as a correct record, and signed by the Chair.




brought forward at the direction of the Chair, who has approved the reason for urgency.


Estimated time : 10 minutes


1) Frances Newell, Sutton and Merton Primary Care Trust’s representative informed the Forum about a workshop called ‘Calling All Men!’ on Wednesday 27 May 2009 at Granfers Community Centre, 73-79 Oakhill Road, Sutton SM1 3AA between 10.00 am and 1.30 pm and included refreshments and lunch. 


The workshop would be targeting men as they are currently under report illness, but ladies were also welcome.  It has been planned to give everyone the chance to give their views on the new local NHS care centre, Wallington and suggestions on how to make it easier for everyone to use NHS services.


Frances stated that this would be the start of the process and would be advertised on GP community boards in partnership with LINk.


More information on this, or other workshops, could be obtained from Clare Lowrie-Kanaka, Patient and Public Engagement Co-ordinator on 020 8251 0588 or e-mail


2) Mark Tomlinson, Chair of Sutton Faith and Belief Forum stated their group had been established since 2005 and had gone from strength to strength with lots of healthy discussions having taken place.  He advised that there had been two ‘Question Times’ to date, one with Councillor Ruth Dombey and the other with Mr Tom Brake, Member of Parliament.


Mark informed the Forum about an Open Evening to be held on Thursday 18 June 2009 in meeting room 1, Civic Offices offering an opportunity for people to get to know each other in an informal setting.  Edwina Curry would be attending to speak about ‘How we can make a difference’.


Councillor Ruth Dombey highlighted the fact that there were Street Pastors in Sutton on Friday and Saturday nights to give support and advice. 




Oral presentation by Linda Fisher, Project Manager.


Estimated time – 5 minutes


Linda Fisher Project Manager thanked everyone who had sent in items for the last edition of the Information Bulletin.  She advised that although this could be used to circulate copies of minutes, it could also be for the advertising of future events or to update about past events.  Linda said that any interesting information which groups or organisations would like to share would also be welcomed.


The despatch date for the next Information Bulletin is the 26 June 2009.  Could any item for inclusion be sent by Wednesday 24 June directly to Linda Fisher, Democratic Services, Civic Offices, St Nicholas Way, Sutton SM1 1EA or e-mail:


Councillor Abigail Lock suggested that a summary of the Equality Bill be circulated with the next Information Bulletin.


            Resolved: To note the above.




Power point presentation from Doctor Peter Simpson, Executive Head of School Improvement, with particular emphasis on the steps in place to remedy poor attainment.


Estimated time : 40 minutes


Dr Peter Simpson, Executive Head of School Improvement gave a presentation on pupil attainment in Sutton schools during the year 2007-2008.


Dr Simpson gave an overview of the attainment in Sutton, identified and commented upon the attainment of specific groups, areas of improvement and the challenges required for Sutton and plans to meet them.


The main areas covered by the presentation were:


  • Early Years Foundation Stage and its results
  • Key Stages One, Two and Three and Four and their results
  • Post Sixteen
  • Special Groups, i.e. Looked After Children, special needs, minority ethnic groups and free school meals.
  • Minority Ethnic Groups – 2007 figures
  • Free School Meals – Social/Economic Disadvantage
  • Challenges - Maintaining high standards, ‘narrowing the gap’, Looked After Children attainment and special needs attainment and inclusion
  • Narrowing the Gap, i.e. difference in attainment for free school meals/non-free school meals across schools and link between social and economic deprivation and other factors
  • Actions in place
  • The overall picture: Strong results, excellent at key stage 4 and post 16, strong primary results (especially progress), strong foundation stage especially during this year and a good picture.


Dr. Simpson highlighted that improvements were needed for Looked After Children and how to narrow the gap.


Anyone requiring a copy of Dr. Simpson’s presentation should contact Linda Fisher, telephone 020 8770 5091 or e-mail:


Resolved: (i) To thank Dr. Peter Simpson for his informative presentation.


(ii) The Forum expressed its appreciation of the good work carried out and the improvement in Sutton’s education.


(ii) A request be made for Dr. Simpson’s presentation to go to the Children and Young People’s Scrutiny Committee and the Sutton Partnership Board.






The Sutton Women’s Forum, supported by a number of other organisations, held the first International Women’s Day celebration in Sutton High Street on Sunday 8 March.  There will be an update by memers of the Sutton Women’s Forum.


Estimated time : 5 minutes




Nasser Butt, Sutton Minority Ethnic Forum will update the meeting on the successful open day held on 31 March 2009.


Estimated time : 5 minutes




Update by Peter Rollins and Janette Garlick on the Minority Ethnic Employees Association’s successful Diversity Day held on the10 March 2009.


Estimated time : 10 minutes


International Women’s Day


Fatema Uddin advised the Forum about the successful International Women’s Day on Sunday 8 March 2009 in Sutton High Street, organised by the Sutton’s Women’s Forum and supported by a number of other organisations.  It was the first time this event had been celebrated publicly in Sutton and was to raise awareness around International Women’s day, a globally recognised celebration of women and included the formal launch of Sutton Women’s Forum.


Fatema said that membership forms had been created to collect details that were now collated into a central database, so engagement with a target audience could take place. Themes are now being worked on to form the basis of a work plan for the coming period.


The celebration comprised of:


  • Partnership working with the Primary Care Trust to promote local health initiatives
  • Opening speeches from the Deputy Mayorees, Anisha Callagan and Councillor Ruth Dombey
  • Inspiring speeches from Edna Harris, an 87 year old who runs keep fit classes for the elderly and Emma, the Youth Parliament leader.
  • Members of Next Generation, a youth group, distributed literature, helped generally and encouraged people to participate.
  • Singers with Bollywood dancers and belly dancers.


Fatema reported that collaborative work had begun with associated organisations, i.e. Sutton Women’s Centre whose 25th anniversary is in 2010 who had agreed to put on a joint activity for International Women’s Day next year. 


The next meeting of the Sutton Women’s Forum is scheduled for Friday 24 June 2009 at the Salvation Army, Benhill Avenue, Sutton from 10.00 am – 12.00 noon.  The speaker will be Anna Cummins, Chair of the Sutton Women’s Centre.


Sutton Minority Ethnic Forum’s Open Day


Nasser Butt updated the Forum on the successful Open Day held on the

31 March 2009.which introduced the Forum to members of the public.  There were 13 exhibitions of different organisations, i.e. the Fire Brigade and the Alzheimer’s Association.  43 people had signed up as members of the Forum.  The Mayor of Sutton, Chief Executive, Leader of the Council and Councillor Ruth Dombey spoke about the purpose of the forum and Council services.

It was hoped to get a website blog to publicise events such as the Councillor Shadowing, Black History, and other events.


Nasser advised that the Annual General Meeting would be held on Wednesday 17 June 2009 at 7.00 pm at the Civic Offices.  The main theme would be the effect of the credit crunch on minority groups.  Tom Brake, Member of Parliament would be the key speaker.


Minority Ethnic Employees Day


Peter Rollins, Chair of the Minority Ethnic Employees Association gave an


There were speeches from Dr Ian Birnbaum, Strategic Director, Children and Young Peoples Learning Services and Chair of the Equality and Diversity Champion Group, the officer group,  on how Sutton is delivering diversity throughout the borough and Mr Simon Latham, Executive Head of Service (Community Living).  There was also participation from Carshalton College. 


Peter advised that a larger Diversity Day would be held again next year, enlisting  ...  view the full minutes text for item 102.



Verbal presentation from the Children, Young People and Learning Services, including the showing of a DVD on the work done with Sutton’s Gypsy and Traveller community, particularly young people, including the plans for June’s Gypsy and Traveller History Month.


Estimated time : 20 minutes


Kate Evans, Inclusion Inspector gave a presentation on the work done with Sutton’s Gypsy and Traveller community, particularly with young people.


Kate highlighted that nationally the number of children registering for primary school was improving, but unfortunately there were 12,000 not registered in secondary school which was the worst of any ethnic group.  This challenge is mirrored in Sutton, although this year a higher proportion successfully transferred to high school.  Nationally, the attainment gap is getting wider for Travellers who need to obtain level 4 at the end of Key Stage 2, to enable them to achieve positive outcomes by the end of key Stage 4.  In Sutton we have a more positive picture, although numbers are too small to make statistically sound evaluations.


Kate stated that some of the main problems for our site Traveller Club were:


  • Location of sites not being close to school
  • No bus stop at the Travellers’ site
  • Traveller parents wary of registering their children at Secondary School
  • Achievement at the end of primary school, sustaining progress and attendance at secondary school
  • Bullying which kept children out of school and affected self esteem


Kate said that there had been positive feedback from the HMI visit about the personalised service and the good routes through London Borough of Sutton and London Borough of Merton.  Priority is given to transition to year 7, support for parents and co-working.


Kate also highlighted that work was being undertaken in conjunction with other local authorities to find further suitable sites.  The Home Office had advised on how many plots should be made available.  The Planning Advisory Committee had been made aware of this special piece of work and there had been huge publicity.


Kate advised that a large training programme had also been proposed for members to enhance their awareness of Travellers’ problems and the best way of communicating with them.


Resolved: (i) To thank Kate Evans, Inclusion Inspector, for her presentation.


(ii) To investigate whether the DVD called ‘Travel to Education’ could be placed onto the Council’s website.




Verbal presentation by Suzy Humphries on the progress of the 2009 Take Part Take Pride.  The Forum will be requested to support the event through the participation of their respective organisations.


There will be a 10 minutes breakout session to collate ideas and to give feedback.


Estimated time : 30 minutes


Suzy Humphries, Take Part Take Pride (TPTP) Project Manager gave a verbal presentation about the Take Part Take Pride event being held this year from Monday 6 July to Sunday 12 July 2009 at various venues across the borough.


Suzy highlighted that they had organised 97 events or opportunities last year and hoped there would be more this year.  One of the events would be the Routemaster bus attending ten different sites around the borough from Monday 6 July and Friday 10 July 2009.


Suzy also advised about the Bid for the ‘Sutton Speaks’ Fund which offers residents the chance to choose how Sutton Council could use £2,000 to do work or create something special for their area. TPTP will shortlist a few ideas and invite the people who made the suggestions to join the ‘Sutton Speaks’ event in Sutton Town Centre on Sunday 12 July, when the public could vote for the winning proposal.


Suzy advised that she and Paul Edge, Take Part Take Pride Assistant could be contacted on:


Take Part Take Pride 2009, Chief Executive’s Office, Civic Offices, St. Nicholas Way, Sutton SM1 1EA, telephone number 020 8770 4391 or lot onto


            Resolved: (i) To thank Suzy Humphries for her presentation.


(ii) That any ideas/suggestions for the Take Part Take Pride event and ‘Sutton Speaks’ Fund event should be submitted to Suzy Humphries or Paul Edge.




Verbal presentation by Nasser Butt, Sutton Minority Ethnic Forum on the plans for the third Councillors’ Shadowing event.


Estimated time : 10 minutes


Nasser Butt, Sutton Minority Ethnic reported about the third Forum representative event of the Councillor Shadowing Scheme which offers local residents and community leaders the opportunity to learn more about its work and the role, responsibilities of locally elected councillors, and other elected/appointed officials and shows how local democracy works in practice.


The scheme has been developed to encourage more young people to get involved, increase the number of minority ethnic and under-represented individuals/groups in all areas and at all levels of local governance.


Nasser explained that no formal knowledge or experience was necessary and whilst the scheme was very flexible, commitment of applicants to attend at least 20 different sessions/activities during the month of October 2009 would be desired.  The activities would include shadowing local councillors in their meetings and surgeries, visiting the House of Commons and the House of Lords to learn how our Members of Parliament work, visiting City Hall and learning about the work of the London Assembly and the Mayor of London, a Question and Answer session with the Mayor of Sutton, School Governors and other voluntary groups meetings.


Nasser said that there would a full induction day at the beginning of October and an awards/graduation ceremony day at the end of the month.  The official media launch of the Scheme would be Friday 20 May 2009 in room 2, Civic Offices from 12.00 noon – 1.00 pm.


Anyone interested in participating in the scheme should contact Nasser Butt, telephone: 07710 389336 or e-mail:


            Resolved: To note the above.




The date of the next meeting will be on Thursday 16 July 2009 in room 5, Civic Offices.


It was noted that the date of the next meeting would be on Thursday 16 July 2009 in room 5, Civic Offices commencing at 7.00 pm.