Liberate has asked all the 2018 election candidates, who were not elected unopposed, for their opinions on a number of issues related to diversity, equality and inclusion that affect minorities in Jersey. The results are now available online.
Vic Tanner Davy, CEO Liberate, said: “Liberate first surveyed the election candidates in 2014 and we had a good response then, so we thought we would repeat the exercise this year. We are delighted that 49 candidates took the time to reply and that a number of others were interested enough to take a look at the survey questions.”
The survey questions ranged from support for the living wage, to what to do about civil partnerships (now that equal marriage has been passed), to birth certificate registration for lesbian parents, to how to assist workers from abroad to integrate into Jersey life, to the addition of religion and philosophical belief as a protected characteristic to the discrimination legislation.
The questions that saw the greatest agreement by respondents were:
- Would you support a change to individual personal taxation rather than the system at present of joint taxation of married couples and those in civil partnerships? (This would make no difference to the amount of income tax collected.) (93.62% of respondents said, yes)
- Would you support the introduction of a system that allows a transgender individual to self-report their gender to the Royal Court in order to register their recognised gender legally (in much the same way that a change of name by deed poll is self-reported and passed through the Royal Court in order to register the change of name legally)? (92.11% of respondents said, yes)
- Jersey Association of Carers estimates that one in seven people are currently fulfilling an unpaid caring role. Would you support a carers’ law (similar to the Care Act in the UK) that sets out carers’ legal rights to assessment and support, and values carers properly for the work they do and the financial burden they remove from government? (97.50% of respondents said, yes)
- Evidence shows that the oldest members of society can gain significant physical, mental and emotional health benefits from being with the youngest members of society. Would you support a joined-up approach to day care provision for the over 65s and under 5s that created/enabled centres caring for both groups simultaneously? (95.00% of respondents said, yes)
The questions that split the candidates were the trickier problems of how to solve the gender pay gap and disability employment gap, which require multiple approaches to improve the situation, with candidates selecting several preferred approaches and suggesting many of their own.
Candidates were completely split on the question of adultery. When asked which options would have their support, respondents were equally divided between “removing adultery as grounds for divorce in a marriage altogether (the grounds could instead be given as unreasonable behaviour, or similar)” and “retaining adultery as grounds for divorce in a marriage and include it as a grounds for dissolving a civil partnership, but create a new legal definition of adultery that covers infidelity for all couples: same-sex or opposite-sex, married or civil partners (i.e. find a means to remove biological specifics of how adultery happens from law)”.
Vic Tanner Davy, CEO Liberate, said: “We hope that the addition of the survey results to the information that is already out there about candidates’ views will assist the electorate with their choice of candidate. Some of these issues have been touched on in candidates’ manifestoes, but the talk at the hustings has, unsurprisingly, not been about minority and inclusion issues. If you are someone from a minority and would like a candidate that will support your particular case then you need to know which candidates are likely to do that for you.”
To find out more and see the complete survey results, please visit www.liberate.je/election18