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Cardiff Council

Race Equality Taskforce

​​​Following Cabinet approval, Cardiff Council’s Equality Team led a public appointment process for Cardiff’s Race Equality Taskforce membership.

It was agreed by Cabinet that the Race Equality Taskforce would comprise of the Chair and up to 14 members. 

Cllr Saeed Ebrahim was selected as the chair of the Taskforce and the remaining members were to be selected through a public appointment process. The membership is made up of individuals with insight and interest in race, ethnicity and human rights and those selected have the ability, experience and influence to make changes in their sector, industry or organisations, members were also selected to achieve an optimum balance of representation across a variety of sectors.

The following individuals have been appointed as members of the Race Equality Taskforce:

In 2008, Asmut became an equalities champion within Cardiff Council, and played an active role in a number of training events, conferences and meetings around race equality. Asmut is currently the Chair of the council’s BAME Employee Network. This has given her more insight into race discrimination and the barriers this presents in the workplace, and Asmut provides support to colleagues in instances of discrimination including formal investigations.

As Cardiff is the capital city of Wales, Asmut feels that it should be leading the way and fostering good relationships within communities to make them fair and inclusive. Asmut has first-hand experience of racial discrimination, and feels that this has given her an excellent understanding of the types of racial discrimination the Black and Minority Ethnic citizens of Cardiff may face, including the impact of racist behaviour.
Emma has 20 years’ experience working in the public sector and held a range of posts at a senior level in Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service. For the last 4 years Emma has held the role of Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for South Wales. As a senior leader in Policing and Criminal Justice, Emma is committed to Equality Diversity and Inclusion, particularly tackling the very real issue of Race inequality across the system.

As DPCC, Emma is joint lead, alongside the Deputy Chief Constable, for Race Equality in South Wales Police, with the responsibility for driving forward a joint action plan, focusing on improving insight and understanding of issues faced by Black and other ethnic minority communities across South Wales, through proactive engagement with our workforce and community groups, tackling ethnic disproportionately in areas such as stop & search , use of force and enhancing work force representation at all levels. As a lifelong Cardiff resident Emma would like to see the city further develop to be the exemplar of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion.
Keithley has extensive knowledge, experience and demonstrable commitment to race equality which can be demonstrated by his current post as the Equality Manager for Cardiff and Vale University Health Board and previous posts in education.

Part of his current role is to ensure that the organisation adheres to the Equality Act 2010, which includes the protected characteristic of race in service provision and employment as well as meeting obligations under the Human rights Act 1998. Keithley is the author of the organisation’s Strategic Equality Plan, which includes objectives around race and involved consultation and engagement. Keithley is a respected, enthusiastic and committed individual possessing a high work ethic and drive to creative a positive impact on society.
Catherine has a Masters level qualification in Public Health, covering the key determinants of health, including race. In Catherine’s roles as a nurse and public health consultant she is driven to ensure public health is equitable, empowering, effective, evidence-based and inclusive.

Catherine believes that incorporating an explicit focus on ethnicity is important within health inequalities work because ethnic identities have implications for health independent of other socioeconomic factors. Catherine is committed to strengthening work together with local minority ethnic communities, and with their community leaders, to address some of these issues. Catherine believes that Cardiff has a strong partnership approach in a range of public health issues and would be keen to extend this in the arena of racial discrimination and race equality.
Marcus is a solicitor at Burges Salmon LLP, where he is a Director in their Projects Team. Prior to beginning his career in law, Marcus studied Chemistry at UCL where he also completed a PhD in the subject. Marcus is a trustee of the Black South West Network (BSWN) and also a Commissioner at the Commission on Race Equality, both in Bristol, through which he has acquired in-depth knowledge of the specific policy areas that affect ethnic minority communities in Bristol and beyond.

Marcus is chair of the BAME Network at his firm and has done a lot of work with ethnic minority communities and organisations within Bristol, which have very similar experiences to those in Cardiff. Marcus wants to influence policy and advocates for the needs and representation of ethnic minority communities. Marcus is passionate about, and an advocate for, race equality, racial justice and equality of opportunity in all his endeavours.
Anita is currently an associate lecturer at the Open University, teaching Masters level modules on inclusive education. She is one of the authors on new short courses on inclusive online education and decolonising the curriculum.

She has previously taught courses on race, ethnicity, equalities, diversity and social policy at universities across England and Wales. Anita has an expert understanding of the complex intersection of sexuality, gender, religion and race. Previously she worked on a number of national (Welsh) and local government reviews and reports on education and equalities, including a review of education and equalities in Wales for the Equalities and Human Rights Commission published by the Bevan Foundation, a study on racism in schools for Save the Children Wales, a review of race issues in the South West of England for the Black South West Network, and the evaluation of Children’s Fund projects in the London Borough of Lambeth.
Najma works for the Future Generations Commissioner in Wales and has a degree in International Relations and a postgraduate degree in Culture, Diaspora and Ethnicity. Najma has been involved in tackling inequalities in Cardiff from a young age, through a range of projects, and has experience of working on social policy, specifically in regards to Black Asian and Minority Ethnic communities in Wales.

Najma is very passionate about race equality initiatives, particularly in Wales. With a background of studying politics, culture and human rights, Najma hopes to move towards a more equal and fairer city by working with the Taskforce. Najma believes Cardiff’s multiculturalism is incredibly fascinating, and something that should be better used to bring together communities whilst tackling racial inequalities in the city.
Salah graduated from the faculty of economics and social studies, University of Khartoum, Sudan in 1975. Salah joined the Civil Service in Sudan (1976-1993) and was the second highest post then as deputy first undersecretary/Director for bilateral economic cooperation in the ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, before fleeing the country in 1993. In Wales, Salah founded and co-founded, and acted as a trustee in many voluntary organisations. Salah also worked for the Welsh Refugee Council (WRC) for more than twenty years, and was the Chief Executive Officer before retiring. Salah’s role with the WRC provided advice and support for refugees and asylum seekers in their efforts to seek refuge in Wales and to ensure they experienced the rights they are entitled to that were enshrined in international and local conventions, protocols and statutes.

Salah has the lived experience first-hand of going through the asylum cohort in the UK. Salah is hopeful that this Taskforce and movements like Black Lives Matter will provide additional opportunities to further the causes and agenda for race equality issues.
Yaina is the founder of NuHi Training, a St. David Award winner (first black person to win this award), a qualified manager, mentor and award-winning global recovery activist. Yaina has worked within the voluntary and public sectors delivering services to marginalised groups in the areas of housing, health, education, and social care. Yaina’s work has been underpinned with a strong knowledge of and commitment to race equality. ​

Over Yaina’s diverse 35 years working career she has participated in many ‘conversations for change’ that have resulted in no change taking place. As a black woman born and brought up in Wales, Yaina feels that she has much to offer in driving forward this much needed initiative and considers herself to be a change maker and positive influencer.
Daniel is an undergraduate student at Cardiff University. Originally from the Philippines, Daniel moved to North Wales at the age of three. In 2016, Daniel moved to Cardiff for university to pursue a degree in Chemistry.

In this time, Daniel has been highly engaged and involved with the student community as a Student Senator, NUS Delegate and Student Advice & Welfare Executive Member, whilst also sitting on the youth board of a National Children’s charity. Daniel joined the Taskforce as he believes there are still many community issues to address and to improve. Daniel wants to contribute his experiences of growing up and navigating through Welsh society as a person of colour and help create meaningful change that is reflected in the community.
Eshaan is currently a Year 12 pupil studying at Fitzalan High School and an active member of a comprehensive spectrum of organisational bodies such as the Economy and Culture Scrutiny Committee, CYPAB (Children and Young People’s Advisory Board), and Young Creators etc.

He has also been elected as the Vice Chair and Executive Member of CYC (Cardiff Youth Council). Eshaan was born and raised in South India, until he arrived in the UK in August 2013. Eshaan recognises himself as a global citizen, who enjoys meeting and making new friends from every walk of life. He believes that as ethical and well-informed global citizens, we must challenge racial inequality and discrimination in our postmodern society, to be champions of freedom and justice.
Yusef’s roles in the Taxi Trade and as Unite Branch Secretary, involve fostering working relationships with various departments within the Local Authority and Welsh Government taxi Licencing Department. This relationship has allowed him to address concerns rapidly and ensure early consultation that keeps the BAME make-up of the trade-in mind, this has resulted in instances of policy changes by enforcing Equality Impact Assessments. Yusef recognises the issues in the Taxi trade which are heavily influenced by race, but also by employment status, social class and language barriers as many of the drivers adopt English as a second language knowing only the basic English to communicate.

Before becoming Unite Branch Secretary Yusef shied away from activism, feeling that he didn’t have the ability to articulate his ideas in a way that could be understood by those in authority and Senior positions​. As those of authority, that would hear him out, held a high position within their employment sectors. Yusef has a passion for youth work and a drive to divert youths in his community away from ‘gang culture’ and the justice system. The prejudices Yusef has faced growing up and continues to face are the same as the under-represented working-class backgrounds youths of today live in. The realisation of how little has changed in all those years has encouraged Yusef to become involved in the important work of the Race Equality Taskforce.
Cllr De’Ath is a Cardiff County Councillor who has represented the Plasnewydd area (commonly known as Roath) of Cardiff since 2012. Cllr De’Ath served as Chair of the Council’s Community & Adult Services Scrutiny Committee which examines the Local Authority’s delivery of Adult Social Services, Community Safety and issues like homelessness and welfare reform. In 2014 Cllr De’Ath joined the Council’s Cabinet serving as Cabinet Member for Early Years, Children and Families and then, following a reshuffle, the Cabinet Member for Safety, Engagement and Democracy.

After the 2017 elections Cllr De’Ath became Deputy Lord Mayor of Cardiff for the Municipal Year 2017/18. Later, becoming Cardiff’s 115th Lord Mayor - becoming the first non-White Lord Mayor in our city’s history and the first Lord Mayor of Afro-Caribbean heritage in all of Wales. Cllr De’Ath served in the role for 18 months after the normally year long term was extended because of the Covid 19 crisis. During his time in office he led calls for the statue of slave owner Sir Thomas Picton to be removed from Cardiff’s City Hall and talked widely around issues connected to the Black Lives Matter movement.
Hilary is CEO of the only Black owned and Black led Alternative Business Structures (ABS) which is Wales based and operates as a SME. Hilary also holds a position as Chair of Butetown Community Centre which is located within one of the oldest settled migrant communities in the UK and the centre plays a pivotal role in community engagement and consultation.

Hilary has a keen interest in and considerable knowledge of working within various voluntary, business and private environments and developing good practices and protocols around Race Equality. Additionally, Hilary is a legal practitioner currently specialising in Asylum, Immigration, Human Rights and Race Discrimination believes that she has the knowledge and skills to identify where there is Racial disparity and explore remedies both Legal and practical.​

As well as the public appointment process, a public consultation took place to determine priority areas for Taskforce consideration. Along with relevant data, the consultation findings were presented to the Taskforce on their inaugural meeting. 

A roundtable discussion regarding the Taskforce’s priorities identified the following Council-led work streams:

  • Employment and Representative Workforce
  • Education and Young People
  • Citizen’s Voice 

The Taskforce agreed that further discussion with the University Health Board, Public Health Wales and South Wales Police would explore the possibility of creating additional work streams on the themes of:

  • Health
  • Criminal Justice

The Health work stream was confirmed by the Taskforce during their 2nd meeting. 

The Criminal Justice work stream was confirmed by the Taskforce during their 3rd meeting.

Each work stream is tasked with coordinating strategic evidence, practice and policy reviews in order to produce a proposal of short, medium and long term recommendations for consideration by the Taskforce and, where approved by the Taskforce membership, progressed for a formal decision to the appropriate decision-making board. For the Council-led work streams, this will be Cabinet. For partner-led work streams, this will include Community Partnership Boards, relevant to each governance structure. ​​​​

Proposals brought forward from this sub-group to Taskforce and confirmed, to date: 

  1. Raising awareness of the council's employment agency ‘Cardiff Works' to ethnic minority communities; improve accessibility and ensure that candidates are representative of the City. This will include comprehensive training and robust referrals to appropriate departments for further support.

  2. Career progression support for current employees from an ethnic minority background. This will include; an Employee Network based senior leadership programme and reverse mentoring with senior managers.

  3. To increase ethnic minority groups’ participation with Into Work Advice services through community engagement, training/ employment opportunities, publicity campaigns, creating a network of partners and forging greater links between procurement and Into Work Advice Services.
Proposals brought forward from this sub-group to Taskforce and confirmed, to date: 

  1. Rights, respect, equality – challenging bullying, hate crime and hate incidents; Improving procedures in schools for reporting and recording of bullying and hate crime and incidents, like racism.

  2. Enabling schools to join up to the ‘Schools of Sanctuary' network; part of The City of Sanctuary Network. This is a movement that is spread throughout the UK and Republic of Ireland, committed to building a culture of hospitality and welcome to all, especially refugees and asylum seekers.
Proposals brought forward from this sub-group to Taskforce and confirmed, to date:

  1. Improving the gathering, monitoring and use of ethnic data in policy and practice; improve the range and scope of the disaggregated ethnicity data available – including intersectional data.

  2. Become Signatory to Race Alliance Wales Manifesto. Overarching themes of this manifesto include: Recognising systemic racism, measuring racial inequality, and planning for race equality:

  3. Young People's Democratic Engagement Project: Creating a scheme which encourages young, working class, people to develop leadership skills and the confidence to take a lead role in representing their communities.
Areas of focus proposed from this sub-group to Taskforce, to date:

  1. Quality of ethnicity recording within the health care arena (patients and staff)

  2. Experiences of racism (patients and staff)

  3. Effective engagement and communication with Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic communities around health and health improvement.
Areas of focus proposed from this sub-group to Taskforce, to date:

  1. Data & Insights
  2. Disparity & Disproportionality
  3. Hate Crime & Reducing Racial Abuse in Cardiff
  4. Cultural Awareness & Anti-Racism Training
  5. Representative Workforce
  6. Youth Provision and Prevention
  7. Building Relationships & Trust