In recent years there has been both legislation and awareness of the need to ensure that all demographic and social groups have equal access to opportunities and benefits

However, in spite of some progress this is far from being achieved with the result not just of unfairness but considerable economic and social deficit. Why is progress so slow?

Temple has some answers stemming from our work with different equality groups and the overarching message of this experience can be summed up in the words of the social disability movement “Nothing for us without us”. We understand that ‘top down’ policies are likely to fail not just because people feel patronised but also because they are frequently inappropriate. Temple can demonstrate how taking an alternative collaborative approach has led to both better policies and genuine change. This has involved collaboration and co-working with excluded groups rather than traditional ‘consultation’ and we have often employed and where required trained people to work with us. Examples include working with male Gypsies and Travellers with diabetes and mental health problems to advise Health Trusts on how to increase early diagnosis for men within their communities or travel planning with members of religious communities.