EQUAL is an independent advisory group tackling racial inequalities in the criminal justice system. It works closely with the Ministry of Justice (MOJ), Her Majesty’s Prisons and Probation Service (HMPPS), the Youth Justice Board and others to improve outcomes for black, Asian and minority ethnic and Muslim individuals.
EQUAL is a focal point for government to work proactively with a range of community partners, academics, user representatives and interest groups to ensure long term improvement in outcomes for black and Muslim young offenders.
It has recently appointed five new members to the advisory group, each with a strong understanding and track record in improving race/faith equality in the justice system and a commitment to improving the outcomes for black and Muslim young offenders. They will work with EQUAL's Chair, Iqbal Wahhab OBE, and with fellow advisory group colleagues to deliver progress on EQUAL’s long-term vision.
Iqbal says: I’d like to extend a huge welcome to our new members. Individually and collectively, they will strengthen the advisory group with their knowledge, skills and lived experiences. EQUAL must play its part in shaping policy and practice in the CJS. The government has set up the Race Commission; we now need to see policies implemented that will start to remove the systemic racial inequalities across the justice system.
The five new members are:
Huseyin Ahmet. Huseyin currently engages in mentoring, providing workshops, IT training and opening corporate opportunities for young people and those at risk of entering the CJS. He strongly believes that everyone deserves a second chance. His lived experience as part of the Muslim/BAME community and being someone who left the system has given him valuable, precious and key insights into the challenges facing those we seek to serve
Paul Andell. Paul has more than 25 years of experience of working in the criminal justice field, having experience of the statutory, voluntary and private sectors. He has undertaken criminal justice related work in practice, policy and research.
Emma Fadipe. Emma is a Contextual Safeguarding Coordinator, trainer and trainee counsellor. She has a specialist knowledge on gangs and child criminal exploitation, with ten years of hands-on experience operating within intervention channels to support practitioners, young people and their families
Shareen Hemmuth. Shareen is Regional Manager- London and the North for The Forward Trust (formally RAPt - The Rehabilitation for Addicted Prisoners Trust). Her professional experience has given her a great understanding of the criminal justice system and partner agencies who all form part of the “reducing re-offending strategy”.
Nazia Mirza. Nazia has over 15 years of experience providing leadership and policy advice on discrimination and advancing equality, including nearly seven years at the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), which gave her substantial knowledge of both policing and race equality in the criminal justice system.