Single Equalities Scheme for Northern Ireland


The Electoral Commission is a public body that serves the electorate across the whole of the United Kingdom. Our aim is to provide equal access to democracy for all. That is why, in line with previous Equality Schemes, we have produced an Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy which covers all parts of the UK. Like any organisation, we have a range of statutory obligations to ensure we promote equality, diversity and inclusivity. We have set out in the strategy what these are and how we comply with them in our activities. But equality, diversity and inclusion go beyond compliance. We know we have to do more to meet this challenge. Our Strategy sets out our aspirations to go further and challenge ourselves to reflect fully the diversity of the electorate in our work to support democracy.

We recognise however that different legislation on equalities applies in Northern Ireland. Section 75 of the Northern Ireland Act (1998) requires public authorities, in carrying out their functions relating to Northern Ireland, to have due regard to the need to promote equality of opportunity and regard to the desirability of promoting good relations between people of different religious belief, political opinion or racial group. In this Equality Scheme we set out how the Electoral Commission proposes to fulfil these statutory duties and the other statutory duties which apply.

We will commit the necessary resources in terms of people, time and money to make sure that we comply with the Section 75 statutory duties and that the equality scheme is implemented effectively and on time.

We commit to having effective internal arrangements in place for ensuring our effective compliance with the Section 75 statutory duties and for monitoring and reviewing our progress.

We will continue to deliver a programme of communication and training for staff and Board members. We will continue to raise awareness for our consultees on the Section 75 statutory duties and our commitments in our equality scheme. We realise the importance of the role of the community and voluntary sector and the general public in ensuring that these duties are effectively implemented; our Scheme is designed to ensure that there are opportunities for those affected by our work to influence how we carry out these duties and to offer the opportunity to make complaints where we do not.

 We will report annually to the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland (ECNI) on our delivery of this scheme and our equalities progress in Northern Ireland including our progress against our Disability Action Plan.

On behalf of the Electoral Commission we are pleased to support and endorse this Equality Scheme which has been drawn up in accordance with Section 75 and Schedule 9 of the Northern Ireland Act 1998 and the guidelines of the Northern Ireland Equality Commission and which forms part of our wider Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy. We are fully committed to effectively fulfilling our Section 75 statutory duties across all our functions (including service provision, procurement and employment) through the effective implementation of this Scheme.

We will make the following arrangements for publication:

We will make the following arrangements for publication:

  • We will make every effort to communicate our scheme widely, for example through social media and partnership working
  • We will e-mail a link to the scheme to the consultees set out at Annex E; and we will respond to requests for the scheme in an alternative format in a timely manner. Other consultees without email will be notified by letter that the scheme is available on request.
  • Our Scheme is available on request in alternative formats such as Braille, EasyRead, large print, audio formats; and in minority languages


A list of our stakeholders and consultees can be found annexed to the EDI Strategy, on our website and by contacting us using the details given above. This scheme will be made available in a range of accessible formats. We will directly consult and inform our equality consultees and stakeholders through a range of channels.

Page history

First published: 22 September 2022

Last updated: 13 September 2023