Islington Council’s Fairness Commission to tackle gap between rich and poor

Islington Council has unveiled its action plan for tackling the wide gap between rich and poor in the borough.

It is the result of the council’s flagship Fairness Commission initiative, which was set up a year ago to find ways of making Islington fairer.

The plan details nineteen “recommendations” that could help bring about a fairer borough if they were adopted by the council, businesses, health trusts and voluntary groups.


Councillor Andy Hull, vice-chair of the Fairness Commission, said: “We’re determined to make Islington a fairer place for all.

“With such huge divides between the ‘haves’ and ‘have-nots’ this is no easy task and it is made no easier by Government cuts on an unprecedented scale.

“This report is only the start – the really hard work of delivering change begins now.”

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The first recommendation is for Islington employers to pay the London Living Wage of �8.30 to their directly employed staff – and to contracted staff “as far as possible within UK and EU law”.

A question mark remains over how the recommendations will translate into action and results.

Councillor Tracy Ismail, a Liberal Democrat member of the commission, said: “The challenge now will be making all these fine words a reality. Actions speak louder than words and some of the recommendations are very ambitious.”

Seven recommendations from The Fairness Commission

- Employers should pay the London Living Wage of �8.30 an hour.

- Major employers should publish the difference in pay between those at the top and bottom of the organisation.

- Islington Council should try to pass a by-law banning payday loan companies.

- Employers should employ more Islington residents.

- All unused communal space in Islington, especially on estates, should be made accessible and used.

- A hotline for reporting antisocial behaviour should be set up.

- The council should lobby for “Boris Bikes” in the north of the borough.