HC Deb 10 January 2000 vol 342 c25W
Mr. Crausby

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what percentage of the total workforce in his Department is of ethnic minority origin; and what steps he is taking to encourage the employment of people from the ethnic minorities in his Department. [102738]

Mr. Chris Smith

My right hon. Friend the Minister for the Cabinet Office set out in her reply of 16 December,Official Report, column 264W, the corporate action that the Civil Service is taking to encourage the employment of people from ethnic minorities. My Department currently does only a limited amount of direct recruitment, but makes use of welcoming statements to encourage applications from under-represented groups. As part of the Department's commitment to provide a workplace free from discrimination, all staff receive equal opportunities awareness training and are encouraged to treat others with courtesy and respect. On 1 April 1999, 8 per cent. of the department's workforce declared themselves as being from an ethnic minority background. We will now be working closely with the Cabinet Office to widen the pool of potential recruits and increase interchange opportunities in order to increase the representation of ethnic minorities in DCMS.