"We must tackle these unfair differences" - Ambitious strategy to reduce inequalities across the Borough agreed by Cabinet
A strategy setting out an aspirational vision for reducing inequality across Stockton-on-Tees over the next ten years was agreed by Cabinet yesterday (Thursday 14 October).
'A Fairer Stockton-on-Tees' is the Council's commitment to fighting fundamental unfair differences that impact negatively on people's life chances, quality of life and life expectancy.
Nine of the Borough's wards are in the ten per cent most deprived in the country and there's an average male life expectancy gap of 21 years between the most and least deprived areas.
The Council are determined to do something about this and ensure people enjoy a healthy and happy life in the Borough, with equal access to opportunities and the right support they need.
Five key interventions that are required to realise this ambition have been identified:
- Tackling fundamental issues across the Borough as a whole
- Focus on reducing the inequalities faced by disadvantaged communities
- Targeted work to help the most marginalised people in Stockton-on-Tees
- Focus on deprived neighbourhoods identified through data and research
- Review the Council's role as a major employer, commissioner and purchaser
Councillor Bob Cook, Leader of Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council, said: "Inequalities exist not only here in the Borough, of course, but unfortunately are experienced right across the country and beyond.
"But we're resolute in our minds that we must try and tackle these unfair differences that we can do something about that have negative impacts on the lives of our residents in many ways.
"There's no silver bullet that can achieve this, it won't be easy and that's why we're setting out this ten-year commitment to making real and measurable interventions that improve people's life chances.
"A research group has been hard at work reviewing an array of in-depth data profiling our wards and gathering the lived experiences of residents and partner organisations through formal consultation and engagement.
"Work will now continue to turn the strategic framework into a deliverable action plan over the coming months that will identify the interventions and resources required to impact positively in the ward areas and deprived communities that need them."