Harriet Harman’s Equality Act requires all public bodies to take account of “the inequalities of outcome which result from socio-economic disadvantage”.
There are two kinds of equality. There’s ‘equality of opportunity’, whereby everyone gets a fair chance. And there’s ‘equality of outcome’, in which everyone gets the same whatever their merits. It’s a critical distinction.
The Home Secretary, Theresa May, has just announced her decision to scrap the clause quoted above, arguing that equality has become not a noble goal, but “a dirty word … associated with the worst forms of pointless political correctness and social engineering”. I assume she’s referring to equality of outcome, as opposed to equality of opportunity. If that’s the case, more power to her elbow!