Sports field with goal posts and houses in the distance

Independent Inequalities Commission

Launched in October 2020, the Independent Inequalities Commission had a six-month mission to examine inequalities across the city-region, consider how they should be tackled and outline specific, ambitious recommendations.

With a diverse membership of prominent thinkers, the commission reviewed evidence from a ‘call for ideas’ from local people, academic research, local equality programmes and insight from the business, public, voluntary and community sectors, to recommend new policy, activity and ways of working. Its independence has allowed the Commission the chance to challenge existing approaches, explore powers and levers for change, and set out a new direction for tackling inequality.

Read the report of the Greater Manchester Independent Inequalities Commission

The Next Level - Good Lives for All in Greater Manchester (PDF, 7.9MB)

Other versions of the report

Short Version (PDF, 3.2MB)

Easy Read Version (PDF, 1.2MB)

Easy Read Version (Accessible Web Page)

The Commission’s findings highlight a range of progressive actions already being taken in Greater Manchester and elsewhere and consider how they can be embedded within public service delivery at all levels, responding to the immediate challenges of the pandemic and pivoting towards new ways of doing things in the future.

In particular, the Commission has called for wellbeing and equality goals to be put at the heart of the Greater Manchester Strategy, with public budgets and projects all geared towards redressing imbalances by building a strong economy and working with residents to deliver the best possible services. Recommendations include strengthening the mandate of equalities panels, establishing an independent Anti-Discrimination Body, working with education and training providers to bridge the skills divide, and community wealth building and investment initiatives. They also call for a target of 2030 being set for every employer in Greater Manchester to pay a living wage and offer living hours to employees.

The Independent Inequalities Commission was chaired by Kate Pickett, Professor of Epidemiology and Deputy Director of the Centre for Future Health at the University of York.

Launch event

Watch presentations from Professor Kate Pickett, Commission members Miatta Fahnbulleh and Lord Simon Woolley at the launch event, followed by responses from Cllr Brenda Warrington, leader for equalities, and Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham.

Slides shown in press conference (PDF, 1.8MB)

Questions and Comments from launch event and answers from panel

View details of all the commission members

The Commission presented its report to the Combined Authority in March 2021. Its recommendations will inform the pandemic response and recovery, as well as informing the next Greater Manchester Strategy, the comprehensive plan for the future of our city-region covering economic growth, health, wellbeing, jobs, housing, transport, skills and training.

As well as its report, the Commission has also published the following documents:

Call for Ideas

In January, the Commission carried out a Call for Ideas on GMConsult (opens in new window), asking for people in Greater Manchester to share suggestions on how to tackle inequality in our city-region. 

Find out more about the Call for Ideas, including a summary of the responses and how the Commission used these to inform its final report (opens in a new window)

Greater Manchester Independent Inequalities Commission: Findings from the ‘Call For Ideas’ survey (Word, 350KB)

More information

For further information on the Independent Inequalities Commission please contact

Independent commission sets challenge to put wellbeing and equality at the heart of everything (news story)