‘Go woke, go broke’ has been a constant jibe at trendy businesses and progressive media outlets in recent years. But now the same refrain can be directed at Sadiq Khan and his Greater London Authority as it tries to plug a £500 million Covid-related black hole that has wrecked its revenue streams.
The number of staff at City Hall has swelled by 45 per cent in just four years, rising from 817 in May 2016 to 1,190 in April 2020. Among these include no less than nine staff tasked with responsibilities for inclusion, diversity and fairness – a ratio of one per 132 total employees.
Posts include a Programme Director for Economic Fairness who earns between £70,241 and £76,029 compared to a London Assembly Member’s salary of £58,543. Mr S has totted up the figures and based on GLA salary bands they should be pulling in a combined annual income of between £467,340 and £508,648.
By comparison the Department for Business just across the Thames has only six employees with the words ‘equality, diversity, inclusion, gender, LGBT or race’ in their job title. This is despite boasting some 4,760 staff in their core department – a ratio of 1 diversity officer to every 793 civil servants. The Treasury has five for 1,700 staff – a rate of one per 340 – while the Home Office has 18 members of its central Diversity and Inclusion team. This is to cover a workforce of nearly 37,000 staff or one equality officer per 2,000 mandarins.
The figures, released after a freedom of information request, come just weeks after it was revealed that the Mayor’s controversial ‘commission for diversity in the public realm’ is expected to cost more than £1 million.