Saturday 14th July saw the largest and liveliest gathering yet of Equality Trust local group representatives and activists.
The day started with a welcome from Sean Baine (Chair of The Equality Trust Board) and then Dr Wanda Wyporska (Executive Director) updated the activists on the work of the Trust including a preview of projects in the pipeline as well as work done and currently ongoing. Both Sean and Wanda attested to the rising profile and impact of the Trust, for example in our work as co-secretariat of the APPG on Poverty as well as our role as UK and European Convener of the global Fight Inequality Alliance.
Up next was the Campaign Ideas Exchange which saw the participants work in small groups to come up with some excellent campaigning ideas which the Trust will collate and feed into its future plans. Then, during lunch, some activists gave mini-Vox Pops to camera on why they were so passionate about tackling inequality. And at the end of lunch there was a photo-opportunity in support of the Walk Together campaign launched by The Elders.
The afternoon was then devoted to a detailed teach-in on The Inner Level book by the authors, Professors Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett. Aided by some excellent discussions and questions, the session really engaged the participants with the vast weight of evidence that shows how inequality causes individuals and society so much harm.
Throughout the day there was also much discussion about how to move forward from outlining the harms of inequality to proposing solutions. It was agreed that a key part of this was the need to present an inspiring vision of how society and people's lives could be so much better if inequality was reduced. And in that spirit the Trust also invited the participants to become the founding signatories of our new initiative, The Ownership Charter, which enables people and organisations to pledge their support for a fairer, more democratic economy that will improve wellbeing for all.
We would like to thank everyone who came along and made it such a great day and we also thank Kate and Richard for their excellent session on The Inner Level.
Bill Kerry (Supporters & Local Groups Manager)
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