Skip to main content

Equality, fairness and respect strategy

The Equality, Fairness and Respect Strategy demonstrates the Council's commitment to deliver fair and inclusive services to meet the needs of all Surrey's communities. It also reflects our commitment to be a best practice employer for all our staff and reflect the diversity of Surrey's population. The priorities enable us to meet the requirements of the public sector equality duty to publish specific equalities objectives for the organisation.

The Strategy has been developed closely with colleagues across the council and partners from the voluntary, community and faith sector, through the Surrey Equality Group and was approved by Cabinet on 23 June 2015.

To ensure that we are delivering our priorities for equality, fairness and respect, the council will provide updates on the progress it is making annually through the Council's performance reporting system.

Confident in our future: Equality Fairness and Respect Strategy 2015-2020

Our Purpose

Ensure services support all Surrey residents and our staff are healthy, safe and confident about their future.

Our Vision

  • Equality
  • Fairness
  • Respect


The makeup of Surrey’s 1.1 million residents is continuing to change, and over the next 25 years the population is projected to increase by over 20%. We will see an increase in the number of residents aged over 65 and an increase in the number of children and young people too. Residents are living longer with a range of different health and care needs, some have multiple and complex needs. Surrey is also a more ethnically diverse place to live than ever before.

This strategy sets out our priorities and demonstrates our commitment to deliver fair and inclusive services to meet the needs of all Surrey’s communities. As one of the largest employers in Surrey this document also supports the Council’s commitment to be a best practice employer for all our staff and reflect the diversity of Surrey’s population.

  • This meets the Council’s duty in the Equality Act 2010 to publish objectives that show how we will promote equality of opportunity and tackle discrimination.
  • There are an estimated 110,000 unpaid carers of all ages in Surrey. The majority of carers are women and includes an estimated 14,000 young carers.
  • We support around 30,000 people each year with a range of physical and learning disabilities as well as mental health issues. Over 20,000 people each year in Surrey access NHS mental health services.
  • In Surrey’s most deprived areas life expectancy is on average five years lower than areas of higher wealth.
  • 17% of Surrey’s population identify themselves as being from a minority ethnic group. Since 2001, the non-white British population has doubled to 9.8%.

Our Equality, Fairness and Respect Priorities

Drawing on a robust evidence base from sources such as Surrey-i, and following engagement with internal and external stakeholders, we have set the following four priorities. These complement our Corporate Strategy, People Strategy and Customer Promise, and support the design and delivery of inclusive and accessible services that help meet the needs of our communities.

  1. Ensure Surrey’s children, adults and families are supported and helped to lead more independent lives.
  2. Support all children and young people to participate and succeed in education, training and employment.
  3. Support preventative actions to reduce health inequalities and increase wellbeing for our communities.
  4. Be a local employer of first choice for people from all our diverse communities, particularly for disabled and younger people.

Our Values

  • Listen
  • Responsibility
  • Trust
  • Respect

Our Strategic Goals

  1. Wellbeing - aiming for everyone in Surrey has a great start to life and can live and age well.
  2. Economic prosperity - ensuring Surrey’s economy remains strong and sustainable.
  3. Resident experience - making sure residents in Surrey experience public services that are easy to use, responsive and value for money.

Files available to download