Who We Are

Panoramic shot of crowd shouting with hands on face

Equality and Rights Network (EaRN)

Set up in 2015, the Equalities and Rights Network (EaRN) is a member-led network dedicated to enabling individuals, groups, organisations and communities of interest to work in partnership with public services across Edinburgh and surrounding areas as part of community planning to:

  • advance equality
  • promote human rights
  • tackle inequality and poverty

EaRN Members have opportunities to be engaged in and consulted on developments and reviews in services, policies and practices across the themes of poverty, inequality, human rights, caring and groups protected under the Equality Act 2010: age, disability, gender re-assignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion and belief, sex and sexual orientation.

Inclusive and influential: empowerment through community action

We believe that people with experience of discrimination and inequality are essential voices in developing meaningful policy and practice surrounding equality and rights. Unfortunately such communities are often pushed to the margins of society and as a result do not always have the opportunity or tools for their voice to be heard. Through providing a platform for people and organisations to come together, communities and individuals facing marginalisation will have a stronger voice because:

  • they are confident to articulate the change they want and need
  • they understand public service processes and how to influence decision makers
  • they are empowered by creating real change

Intersectional approach

EaRN is committed to providing a supportive and safe space for vulnerable communities and individuals. Part of this commitment involves taking an intersectional approach to tackling inequality. This means that rather than focusing on themes like race, disability or sexual orientation separately, we explore how such themes overlap with and affect one another and how groups and individuals can experience multiple discriminations at a time. The intersectional approach enables Members to identify common needs and priorities and ensures that the most marginalised voices have opportunities to be heard.