Equality information

Legal Duty

Equality Act 2010

The Equality Act 2010 replaced previous discrimination laws and introduced nine legally protected characteristics groups:

  • Age
  • Disability
  • Gender reassignment
  • Pregnancy and maternity
  • Race
  • Religion and belief
  • Sex
  • Sexual orientation
  • Marriage and civil partnership (limited to elimination of discrimination, harassment and victimisation)

Everyone has protection under this legislation.

The Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED)

The PSED requires the council and other organisations carrying out public functions on our behalf, to advance equality and to understand how people with protected characteristics are affected by policies and services.

All public bodies must seek to:

  • Eliminate discrimination, harassment, victimisation
  • Advance equality of opportunity between protected characteristic groups
  • Foster good relations between protected characteristic groups

By considering how to:

  • Remove or minimise disadvantage experienced by people due to their protected characteristics
  • Take steps to meet the needs of people with protected characteristics where they are different from the needs of others
  • Encourage people from protected characteristics groups to take part in public life or other activities where participation is disproportionately low.
  • Meet the needs of disabled people by taking account of their disabilities
  • Tackle prejudice
  • Promote understanding

Specific duties

The council must publish information to show how it complies with the Public Sector Equality Duty.  This must include equality information about its employees and service users.  The council must also publish equality objectives.

Darlington equality facts and figures

The more we know about our local population and service users the better we can understand their needs in order to deliver services.  Information is collected from a variety of sources and relates to Darlington where this is available and nationally where not.  

Age and sex

Darlington mid-2013 population estimates (Crown Copyright)

Total population 105,696

AgeMale (number)Male (%)Female (number)Female (%)
Total 51,216 100.00 54,180 100.00
Aged under 1 year 662 1.3 645 1.2
Aged 1-4 years 2,739 5.3 2,577 4.8
Aged 5-8 years 2,552 5.0 2,550 4.7
Aged 9-12 years 2,422 4.7 2,237 4.1
Aged 13-16 years 2,515 4.9 2,557 4.7
Aged 17-20 years 2,374 4.6 2,219 4.1
Aged 21-24 years 2,288 4.5 2,497 4.6
Aged 25-28 years 2,497 4.9 2,660 4.9
Aged 29-32 years 2,536 5.0 2,657 4.9
Aged 33-36 years 2,488 4.9 2,562 4.7
Aged 37-40 years 2,475 4.8 2,766 5.1
Aged 41-44 years 2,990 5.8 3,058 5.6
Aged 45-48 years 3,107 6.1 3,216 5.9
Aged 49-52 years 3,091 6.0 3,167 5.8
Aged 53-56 years 2,698 5.3 2,917 5.4
Aged 57-60 years 2,537 5.0 2,523 4.7
Aged 61-64 years 2,441 4.8 2,528 4.7
Aged 65-68 years 2,483 4.8 2,612 4.8
Aged 69-72 years 1,790 3.5 1,870 3.5
Aged 73-76 years 1,587 3.1 1,851 3.4
Aged 77-80 years 1,241 2.4 1,528 2.8 
Aged 81-84 years 806 1.6 1,204 2.2 
Aged 85-90 + 897 1.8 1,779 3.3


2011 Census information shows 19.6% of the population of Darlington have a limiting long term illness. This is a fall from the 20.4% 2001 census but is higher than the national average of 17.9% for England and Wales.

Disability by category where available

Visual impairment (Data from RNIB)

RNIB Sight Loss Data Tool [external link]

Total number of people registered blind or partially sighted in Darlington:

0-17 20
18-49* 90
50-64 95
65-74** 70
75+ 390
Overall Total 670

Living with Sight Loss:

Number of people living with sight loss in 2011 3,300
Number of people living with severe sight loss (blindness) 400

Hearing impairment

National Statistics:

Action On Hearing Loss [external link]

Office for National Statistics main language article [external link]


2011 Census - Table "Main Language detailed, England local authorities" [external link]

150 people in Darlington choose sign language as their main language

Mental Health

Community Mental Health Profiles [external link]

Depression: Patients aged 18 and over with depression, as recorded on practice disease registers 5,157 6.1%
Depression: The percentage of patients aged 18 and over with depression recorded on practice disease registers for the first time. 1,334 1.6%
The percentage of patients with schizophrenia, bipolar affective disorder and other psychoses as recorded on practice disease registers. 1,020 0.96%

Learning disability 

Darlington's learning disability profile for 2014 can be found on the Public Health pages

Gender reassignment and sexual orientation

There is very little official information available regarding gender reassignment and sexual orientation but the following sources provide an indication of the UK and local position.

1.5 % of adults in the UK identified themselves as Gay, Lesbian or Bisexual. 2.7% of 16 to 24 year olds in the UK identified themselves as Gay, Lesbian or Bisexual compared with 0.4 % of 65 year olds and over. Source: Office for National Statistics, 2012, Integrated Household Survey April 2011 to March 2012 [external link]: Experimental Statistics, ONS, Newport, Wales

The figure of 1.5% implies 1,300 adults in Darlington identify themselves as Gay, Lesbian or Bisexual. However, Gay Advice Darlington and Durham (GADD) advise caution on relying on these figures, as they only demonstrate what percentage of the population are prepared to divulge their sexual preference to a cold-calling stranger on the doorstep. GADD further point out that the Department of Health and the Home Office use a figure of 6% to 7% of the population as an estimate.

There is a similar lack of available information regarding gender reassignment. The Home Office ’Report of the interdepartmental working group on transsexual people‘ based on research from the Netherlands and Scotland, estimates that there are between 1,300 and 2,000 male to female, and between 250 and 400 female to male transsexual people in the UK. However, Press for Change estimate the figures at around 5,000 post-operative transsexual people. Further, GIRES (2008) claims there are 6,200 people who have transitioned to a new gender role via medical intervention and approximately 2,335 full Gender Recognition Certificates have been issued to February 2009..

The figures are more diverse when looking at the trans community in the UK, where estimates range from 65,000 (Johnson, 2001, p.7) to 300,000 (GIRES, 2008). Source: Office for National Statistics, 2009, Trans Data Position Paper [external link], ONS, Newport, Wales

Locally, GADD advise that they have in excess of 20 trans people awaiting gender service access with the NHS alone.

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) research paper on trans inequalities [external link] provides further information around the issues faced by this community.

Further information can be found at Stonewall [external link]

Marriage and Civil Partnership

Marriage and Civil Partnership from the 2011 census:

Marriages, Cohabitations, Civil Partnerships and Divorces [external link]

Details of marriages in England and Wales [external link]

Census 2011 - Table "Marriage Summary Statistics"

  • 577 - All Marriages
  • 466 - Civil Marriages
  • 111 - Religious Marriages

Pregnancy and maternity

In 2012 there were 1227 live births in Darlington: 655 male and 572 female.

Office for National Statistics Time Series Explorer [external link]

Race (ethnicity and nationality)

Darlington 2011 Census, Ethnic Group (Crown Copyright)

Ethnic groupNumber%
All usual residents 105564  
White: English/ Welsh/ Scottish / Northern Irish / British 98898 93.69
White: Irish 328 0.31
White: Gypsy or Irish Traveller 350 0.33
White: Other White 2019 1.91
Mixed / Multiple Ethnic Groups: White and Black Caribbean 463 0.44
Mixed / Multiple Ethnic Groups: White and Black African 97 0.09
Mixed / Multiple Ethnic Groups: White and Asian 350 0.33
Mixed / Multiple Ethnic Groups: Other mixed 236 0.22
Asian / Asian British: Pakistani 145 0.14
Asian / Asian British: Bangladeshi 523 0.50
Asian / Asian British: Chinese 349 0.33
Asian / Asian British: Other Asian 462 0.44
Black / African / Caribbean / Black British: African 206 0.20
Black / African / Caribbean / Black British: Caribbean 105 0.10
Black / African / Caribbean / Black British: Other Black 46 0.04
Other Ethnic Group: Arab 112 0.11
Other Ethnic Group: Any Other Ethnic Group 149 0.14

Language proficiency

In Darlington 2% of the population have a main language that is not English but speak English very well or well.

0.62% of the population cannot speak English or cannot speak English well. (ONS Crown Copyright)

Office for National Statistics Time Series Explorer [external link]

Religion or belief

Darlington 2011 Census, Religion (Crown Copyright)

All usual residents 105564  
Christian 71122 67.37
Buddhist 307 0.29
Hindu 317 0.30
Jewish 45 0.04
Muslim 971 0.92
Sikh 361 0.34
Other religion 310 0.29
No religion 25415 24.08
Religion not stated 6716 6.36

A further breakdown of religion and belief information is available on the Office for National Statistics [external link]

Additional sources of information

What Action Have We Taken?

Equality Scheme 2012-16

The Equality Scheme 2012-16 [pdf document] helps the Council to meet the Public Sector Equality Duty set out in the Equality Act 2010. The scheme was drawn up after consultation with a wide range of representatives from protected characteristics' groups. It commenced in September 2012 and replaced all of the Council's previous equality schemes.

Equality Impact Assessments (EIAs)

EIAs are used to help the Council manage change and review services to achieve the fairest possible outcomes. Assessments are key to making sure that the Council has due regard to the Equality Duty when it makes decisions on its activities, including policies, projects, services and budgets. The EIA provides decision makers with an understanding of the potential effects of their decisions across all parts of the community.

Protected Characteristics workshops and feedback

In June 2010 a number of Workshops were held with groups of people who shared protected characteristics with the aim of identifying key issues and priorities for these groups. Information supplied through these workshops was particularly helpful in establishing priority areas for our equality objectives published on 5 April 2012.

From these workshops a number of common strands were identified. These have been used to influence the council's equalities planning and delivery.

  1. Transport (safe and accessible - need to then look at individual strands)
  2. Information and Communication (information that is accessible for all groups and gives timely information)
  3. Process for delivering the Act (A process to implement the act in an open and transparent way)
  4. Embed impact assessments that are robust and of high quality
  5. Commissioning and procurement used to promote equality
  6. Put in place mechanisms to report, deal with, prevent hate crime, ASB, discrimination and harassment
  7. Challenge and change perceptions and stereotyping of people in Darlington
  8. Ensure that abuse in the home is dealt with effectively
  9. Maximise and celebrate the role of voluntary community groups in removing barriers impacting upon equalities
  10. Spread good practice in equality
  11. Retain a diverse Darlington workforce with the Council playing its part in addressing barriers

Examples of Council activity influenced by understanding equality:

If you need this information in a different language of format please contact Customer Services

Email: Customerservices@darlington.gov.uk

Tel: 01325 380651