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Glass Ceiling Blocks Skills Diversity


England’s local authorities are losing out on senior skills from black and ethnic (BME) communities because of the ‘glass ceiling’, according to new government research.

Almost half of the country’s local authorities do not have a single person from a BME background in a top position, and the situation is worsening.

The report from the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister and the Audit Commission shows that 189 local authorities do not have a BME employee in their top five per cent of earners. This figure has risen from 181 in 2003-4.

Joan Munro, national adviser on workforce strategy at the Improvement and Development Agency for local government, claimed the government was working to improve diversity.

“This is very important to us. If people don’t see they can have a senior career in local government if they are from BME communities, they won’t apply and we could miss out on the top talent,” she said.


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