Equality Impact Assessment (eia): Stage 1: Initial Screening Form for New Policies




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Equality Impact Assessment (EIA): Stage 1: Initial Screening Form for New Policies



A: Summary Details



Directorate:


Communities, Localities and Culture

Section:

Environmental Protection

Animal Wardens



Person responsible for the assessment:


Clive Shipman

Interim Assistant Head of Environmental Protection



Contact details:

Ext 6942


Name of Policy to be assessed:


Dog Fouling enforcement

Is this a new or revised policy:




Date policy scheduled for Overview and Scrutiny/Cabinet/LAB:












B1. Preparation

It is important to consider all available information that could help determine whether the policy could have any adverse impact. Please attach examples of available monitoring information, research and consultation reports.


  1. Do you have monitoring data available on the number of people (from different target groups) who are using or impacted upon by your policy? Please specify what monitoring information you have available (your monitoring information should be compared to the current available census data to see whether a proportionate number of people are taking up your service).




No




  1. If monitoring has NOT been undertaken, will it be done in the future? If so, specify the arrangement you intend to make; if not please give a reason for your decision.




Yes – monitoring of enforcement action taken against individuals will be monitored on age, sex and race




  1. Please list any consultations that you may have had and/or local/national consultations, research or practical guidance that will assist you in completing this EIA




ENCAMS formerly Keep Britain Tidy Campaign

Dog fouling is of great concern to the general public. This is apparent not only from the

number of complaints made to local authorities but also by behavioural research

conducted by ENCAMS. This research indicated that many people believe dog fouling

to be the worst kind of litter or refuse found in public places. The research also

highlighted that there were at least 4.6 million dog owners in the UK allowing their pets

to foul and who were not taking responsibility for this by cleaning up the mess.

Research by ENCAMS has indicated that the profile of owners who do not clean up after their dog is as follows:

They are more likely to be male than female

They are found at all age groups with a slightly higher proportion being between the ages of 18 and 24

They are to be found in any social class

They all know they could be fined, but the majority believe that they will not be caught


Local Surveys?
Consultation with RSLs Parks and ALMO as part of the service level agreement – Policy as regards prosecution of offenders currently used is generally approved of. A more formal process of evaluation will be developed with the RSLs and ALMO



B2: Your Policy





  1. What is the main purpose of the policy?




The main purpose of the policy is to minimise the nuisance and health risks to the residents and visitors to the Borough

Dog fouling is a major concern to the general public and a source of complaint to the Council (200 complaints concerning dog fouling were received in 2008-9 ) It is very unpleasant to the public, it is not only a public health nuisance but a health hazard. Fouling by dogs can cause disease in humans. One such disease Toxocariasis is particularly hazardous to small children as it can result in blindness. A parasitic worm causes this disease and infection occurs when the worms' larvae found in dog faeces is ingested.






  1. Are there any other objectives of the policy, if so what are they?




The policy is designed to reduce the number of dog fouling incidents throughout the Borough

The policy is in line with the general enforcement policy of the Council and offenders may be dealt with in a number of ways ranging from prosecution, simple caution or written warning dependant on the circumstances of the offence and the profile of the offender.

The fine can be up to £1,000

The enforcement policy also has elements of education and awareness of the problem of dog fouling and the need for its control and these are delivered by the Animal Wardens as part of comprehensive dog fouling enforcement





  1. Who are the main stakeholders of the policy?




Police, Animal Welfare Organisations, other Council Services particularly the Parks service, Tower Hamlets Homes and Registered Social Landlords, elected members, dog owners and the general public



  1. Is the policy associated with any other Council policy (s)?




Council’s enforcement policy

Community Plan –Health Community





  1. Is the responsibility for the proposed policy shared with another department or authority or organisation? If so, what responsibility, and which bodies?




It is intended that the new Tower Hamlets Enforcement Officers THEOs will be authorised to enforce the provisions of the legislation on the streets when patrolling although their high visibility will probably result in a very few prosecutions being observed



C: The Impact

Assess the impact that the policy could have on each of the target group. The impact could be negative, positive or neutral. If you have assessed negative impact for any of the target groups you will need to also assess whether that negative impact is high, medium or low – see glossary in the attached guidance notes for definitions.


  1. You need to identify the impact of the policy on the different equalities target groups.




  1. : Identify the impact of the policy on people with disabilities:

Disability

Positive

Negative (please specify if High, Medium or Low)

Neutral

Reason

Disabled persons in general

There are exemptions in the legislation for guide dogs


Wheelchair users


x




x

x

Offences concerning disabled are extremely rare as they account for only a small number of dog walkers
The exemption for this category is defined in legislation
Wheelchair user are particularly inconvenienced by dog fouling and reducing instances of dog fouling are beneficial to them




  1. Identify the impact of the policy on different age groups:

Age Group (specify, for example younger, older etc)

Positive


Negative (please specify if High, Medium or Low)

Neutral

Reason

Universal policy covering all age groups
Those below age of criminal responsibility.

Elderly

x

x

x








Offenders will be prosecuted, cautioned or receive a warning letter dependant on the evidence

Warning letter to parents and education


In cases where elderly are involved a caution would normally be offered for the first offence.

Second offenders would be prosecuted






  1. Identify the impact of the policy on men and women:

Gender

Positive

Negative (please specify if High, Medium or Low)

Neutral

Reason

Women







x

The policy as regards gender does not differ between the sexes although profiling by ENCAMS has shown hat women are less likely to offend than women


Men







x

The policy as regards gender does not differ between the sexes although profiling by ENCAMS indicates that offenders are more likely to be make and in the 18-24 age group.

We have no evidence to substantiate this but will be monitoring those offenders in future as part of our improvement plan.






  1. Identify the impact of the policy on different race groups:

Race

Positive

Negative (please specify if High, Medium or Low)

Neutral

Reason

Asian (including Bangladeshi, Pakistani, Indian, Chinese, Vietnamese, Other Asian Background – please specify________________)







x

Traditionally not a dog owning group.

Although Asian youths in gangs do have Staffordshire terrier type dogs –this though is an issue regarding dangerous dogs rather than dog fouling





Black (including Caribbean, Somali, Other African, Other black background – please specify_____________)







x



White (including English, Scottish, Welsh, Irish, Other white background – please specify_________________)







x

Overwhelmingly largest proportion of prosecutions taken against White people


Mixed Dual heritage (White and Black Caribbean, White and Black African, White and Asian, Other mixed background - please specify__________________)







x






  1. Identify the impact the policy on different religious/faith groups:

Religious/Faith groups (specify)

Positive

Negative (please specify if High, Medium or Low)

Neutral

Reason

Buddhist







x

Policy is universal and not dependant on religion/ faith.

Dog ownership amongst

Muslim, Hindu ,Buddhists and Sikh is very low


Christian







x




Hindu







x




Jewish







x




Muslim







x




Sikh







x







  1. Identify the impact of the policy on lesbian, gay men, bisexual or heterosexual people:

Sexual Orientation

Positive

Negative (please specify if High, Medium or Low)

Neutral

Reason

Lesbian







x

Universal policy

No information held on sexual orientation of offenders



Gay Men







x



Bisexual







x






  1. Are there other groups that the policy will impact upon? For example, health and poverty implications.

Other groups

Positive

Negative (please specify if High, Medium or Low)

Neutral

Reason

Health implications

Positive










Lower income

Positive










Any other groups:

Positive













  1. As a result of completing Question 1 a-f above what is the impact of your policy?

High  Medium  Low 


If you have assessed the impact as HIGH you must complete a full impact assessment.

2. Could you minimise or remove any negative impact that is of medium or low significance? Explain how.



Strand

How any negative impacts will be minimised or removed

Age:

None identified

Disability:



Gender:



Race:



Religious/Faith groups:



Sexual Orientation:



Other groups:



3. If there is no evidence that the policy promotes equal opportunity – could it be adapted so it does? How?




No evidence



Please ensure that all actions identified in the above sections are included in the attached action plan and in your service plan.





Please sign and date this form, keep one copy and send one to Coreen Ung in Strategy & Programmes.


Signature



Signature



Signature



Lead Officer



Service Head



Strategy & Programmes



Date


Date


Date




D: Action Plan

Ensure that all actions identified in the above Impact section are included in the your EqIA action plan and in your service plan.


Recommendation

Key activity

Progress milestones

Officer Responsible

Progress

Monitoring of all enforcement actions taken

Develop data capture system by Oct 2009

Introduce by end of 2009

Quarterly monitoring



Iain Pendrigh/Dawn Sammon




Customer surveys at Responsible Dog Awareness raising events of equality issues


Introduce during Autumn 2009

Introduce by end of 2009

Quarterly monitoring



Iain Pendrigh/Dawn Sammon




Training for all animal wardens in equality issues


Incorporate in team plan.

All staff to be trained by March 2010



By end of 2009

Iain Pendrigh/Dawn Sammon




Survey and report to RSLs and ALMOs using the Council for its dog fouling enforcement


Part of annual service review undertaken with client

By end of 2009

Iain Pendrigh/Dawn Sammon




Carry out full review of Enforcement Policy


Review with Legal Services and all stakeholders

By March 2010

Iain Pendrigh/Dawn Sammon









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