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Business Wales Anti-Racist Action Plan

In October 2022 Race Equality First (REF) was commissioned by the Welsh Government to develop an Anti-racist Action Plan for the Welsh Government’s Business Wales Service. 

The development of this Plan is an action within the Entrepreneurship section of Welsh Government’s Anti-racist Wales Action Plan . The expected outcome of developing and implementing this Plan is a Business Wales service that is aware of how racism creates disparities, is culturally confident and generates increased numbers of ethnic minority people using the service.

Since 2016 of the 5,869 clients supported by Business Wales to start a business, 405 (7%) identify as Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic .  

Business Wales has directly supported over 13,062 business owners since 2016 to support their business development and growth, with 578 (4.4%) identifying as Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic .  

An analysis of self-employment by ethnicity sourced from the Annual Population Survey shows that 4.4% of self-employed people in Wales were from an ethnic minority background .  

This Plan will provide Business Wales with the roadmap to becoming an anti-racist and culturally confident organisation. 

Methodology and Monitoring of Plan:

The methodology for the Business Wales Action Plan involved a review of the service by Race Equality first, which included the Business Wales website and documents that are used to manage and deliver the contracted Business Wales service.

The actions contained within this plan will be monitored and reported on a quarterly basis, these results will be fed into Entreperneurship and Business Wales Senior Management and contract management review meetings.

Business Wales Anti-Racist Statement:

Business Wales is committed to being an anti-racist organisation. We will take proactive steps to ensure our organisation is free from systemic racism. 

Our Race Equality Action Plan sets out how we will create a work environment in which our staff and our customers from all backgrounds do not experience prejudice, discrimination, or marginalisation. This includes:

  1. Ensuring that all members of the senior leadership team undertake mandatory racism and cultural awareness training to become educated and aware of their own unconscious bias and how to unpack this.
  2. Appointing an Equality, Diversity & Inclusion lead, who  reports directly to the Welsh Government senior leadership team and board who is tasked with developing and implementing our race equality action plan. 
  3. Ensuring updates on the progression of our Anti-racist Action Plan remain a fixed board agenda item.
  4. Improving our data gathering to better understand who is using our services so that we can remove any barriers to access and adapt our services for black and ethnic minority communities.
  5. Gathering and analysing our ethnicity workforce data so that we can design and measure our progress against evidence-based activities on diverse representation. 
  6. Ensuring that there is transparent and open advertisement of roles, with racially diverse panels involved throughout the recruitment and selection process. 
  7. Appointing a lead equality champion within the Business Wales contracted delivery for race who is held to account for the development and implementation of our Anti-racist Action Plan. 
  8. Ensure sufficient funding for translators, interpreters and alternative communication methods are available.