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Equality: Applications

Volume 496: debated on Monday 5 October 2009

To ask the Minister for Women and Equality whether the new public duty in the Equality Bill to address socio-economic disadvantage will be a material consideration in the assessment of (a) planning applications and (b) licensing applications by local authorities. (291242)

The new socio-economic duty will be a consideration for local authorities when they are making decisions of a strategic nature, such as when preparing their sustainable community strategies, and setting key objectives and spending priorities. The sustainable community strategy is in turn reflected in the local development framework, which is one of the documents that shapes how those objectives are delivered. The duty will therefore influence the overall strategic plans and policies in the light of which individual planning and licensing applications are considered. It may also, in particular cases, be material to individual decisions, where the local authority considers these to be of a strategic nature.