Leicestershire Equalities Challenge Group Members

Please find below the current list of our Members.

If you would be interested in joining the Leicestershire Equalities Challenge Group, please email carine.cardoza@ageukleics.org.uk

  • List of LECG Members (PDF, 134 Kb)

  • Peter Lewis, Chair of LECG

    I was Chair of Human Rights & Equalities Charnwood, and am now a Trustee of Equalities Action Charnwood. I retired from Loughborough University in 2007, having taught English & Drama. I initiated many international links, training seminars and exchanges over human rights provision, in different communities both in Europe and beyond. Charnwood Borough Councillor 1999 to 2011 - Cabinet member for Culture, Leisure, Community Cohesion and Equalities; Leicestershire County Council from 2005 to 2017, Chairman of County (2012-13) and on retirement was appointed an Honorary Alderman. My County work especially centred on Children and Families, school governance, SEN, interfaith religious education, supporting physical and mental disabilities, and I served on County Adoption and Fostering Panels. I've been involved with health provision through Better Care Together Panel, and the West Leicestershire CCG, with particular interests in care for the elderly, the provision of disability support, home care, mental health, and the co- ordinated provision between the various parts of health services. I'm the elected Chair of Leicestershire Equalities Challenge Group, through AgeUK LLR. I am frequently engaged in public debate around sexualities, interfaith issues, the challenge of growing hate crime. I am especially active in seeking to foster communal development through direct involvement in consultation and decision making at every level, both local and national.

  • Lucy Smith, Vice Chair of LECG

    Since my retirement as a tutor, I have done voluntary work on a variety of projects, forums and programmes in health and social care in Leicestershire, the East Midlands and nationally. My predominant interest is in the health and well being of older people and I am also passionate in believing that bringing the young and older generations together to share interests, learn from each other and have fun together will help to break down barriers of negative attitudes. I am the Chair of the Leicestershire Older People's Engagement Network "OPEN". The personal contact reach of the network throughout Leicestershire is over 3000. In partnership with Leicestershire Police, AgeUK Leicestershire & Rutland and Voluntary Action South Leicestershire, OPEN has hosted intergenerational events called 'Bridging the Years' in 2014, 2015, 2017 and 2018 which were attended by over 100 young and older people at each event. I served as an executive member on the East Midlands Later Life Forum. I have been a member of the national AgeUK Services Sounding Board for the last 10 years. My current involvement includes serving as the Vice Chair of LECG.

  • Dr Iris Lightfoote, The Race Equality Centre (TREC)

    TREC delivers services to individuals, communities and organisations. Services to individuals include Discrimination Casework (for those complaining about racial harassment or discrimination); Integration Service (for new arrivals to Leicester with refugee status); ESOL in employment and, Employment and Enterprise - supporting clients into jobs and training. Our health and well-being provision further extends our ability to deliver a one-stop service. Services for communities and organisations focus on influencing policy development, public education and supporting community development, including facilitating the Racial Minority Voluntary Sector Assembly. Our research and development arm links us into the city’s universities through partnership arrangements and, TREC also delivers some specialised training and consultancy on a fee basis.

  • Alison Adams, Leicester Cathedral

    I am the Sub-Dean,Canon Pastor and the Diocesan Social Responsibility Enabler. I chair the strategic Fair Finance Committee and am involved in partnership work around issues e.g.homelessness, poverty, dementia and modern-day slavery.

  • Liz Blackshaw

    I combine my passion for science with a refusal to accept social inequality and injustice. I have campaigned for legal changes in the issuing of birth certificates as I was determined to seek the right for both parents to be included on birth certificates, regardless of gender. I have trained to be a Breastfeeding peer supporter and advocate and was instrumental in developing the first 'Returning to work or study' workshop for breastfeeding parents. I also created an effective network of breastfeeding advocates, health professionals and services users, which convinced the NHS to reconsider their proposals. I have advocated against the closure of the Children’s Centres and have set up ‘Sorrel Stones’ a local arts project with the intention of sharing happiness and promoting outdoor exercise for adults and children of all ages.

  • Mathew Hulbert, 'True Colours' LGBT+ partnership

    I was a Trustee of the Leicester LGBT Centre from 2014 to 2020 and its Chair from 2017 to 2020. I was a Borough Councillor in Hinckley and Bosworth from 2011 to 2015. My main roles on the Council were as the Children and Young people's Champion and the Fairtrade Champion. A local LGBT+ historian says, at the time I was the only Out principle authority Councillor in the County. Since May 2019 I've been an elected member of Barwell Parish Council, on which I Chair its Planning/Highways and Events Committees. I'm the Independent Chair the Leicestershire Fire Service and Police Service LGBT+ Independent Advisory Group (IAG), which I also represent on the Leicestershire Fire and Police Advisory Group on Equalities (FPAGE.) I Chair the Heathlane Surgery (Earl Shilton) Patient Participation Group (PPG), which I also represent on the Locality PPG (Hinckley and Bosworth) and the Network PPG (in connection with the West Leicestershire Clinical Commissioning Group; CCG). I also represent the Locality PPG on the Hinckley and Bosworth Health and Wellbeing Partnership. I'm also on the organising committee of the 'True Colours' partnership, led by Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council, which organises events in the borough celebrating and commemorating key LGBT+ events throughout the year. I also Chair the Hinckley and Bosworth Fairtrade Forum and Barwell Carnival Association.

  • Dr Jill Vincent, Charnwood Arts

    My career has combined my interest in the arts with work teaching, as a researcher in social policy, political engagement and activity in the voluntary and community sector. I have a PhD at University of Nottingham and worked for many years at the Open University. My main paid employment was at the Centre for Research in Social Policy at Loughborough University. I was a Borough Councillor for sixteen years, spending the final year as Mayor of Charnwood, and a Trustee of John Storer Charnwood and Equality Action (where I am still actively involved). I was a Governor at Loughborough College for eight years and am now a co-opted member of the governing body. My interest in the arts is a thread through my life. I worked in Arts in Prisons research and provision; I am a past chair and active director of Charnwood Arts, a community and participatory arts organisation that works closely with Arts Council England, Love Loughborough BID and local authorities, among many partnerships. I was awarded an Honorary Degree by Loughborough University in 2012.

  • Mina Rodgers

    I have worked in the NHS for 40 years. Since retiring from my caring role, I have been engaged in many projects such as Healthwatch, a voice for the people of Leicestershire. Currently, I am the Vice Chair of OPEN (Older People's Engagement Network), I am a member on the Leicestershire Adult Social Care Advisory Panel on Leicestershire County Council, I am a Unison Retired Members Officer for the Leicestershire Health Branch representing over 360+ members, I am a member of the LPT Alliance (Community Health) and a PPPG Committee member representing patients and public. I am also on the National Pensioners Convention, a member on the East Midlands Regional Committee, a national representative for the Ethnic Minority Elders and a member of a Patient Participation Group in Glenfield Surgery in Leicestershire. I am also a member of the Women's Guild and a member of my local Church group in Groby, Leicestershire.

  • Kazi Mashud, Equality Action, Loughborough

    I have been involved with Equality Action, Loughborough, Leicestershire since 1992. Through my jobs and voluntary capacity, I have been dealing with a diverse range of service users mainly from Black and Asian Minority Ethnic background and clients where my knowledge on Equality and Diversity, Welfare Rights, Immigration and Nationality, Housing and Accommodation, Family Mediation, Health and Hospital, Education and Skills issues have enabled me to give advice, guidance and support to service users.

  • Caroline Gadsby, Turning Point

    We are a leading social enterprise, providing health and social care services in over 300 locations across England. We work with people who need our support with their drug and alcohol use, mental health, offending behaviour, unemployment issues and people with a learning disability. We aim to inspire and empower them to discover new possibilities in their lives. Everything we do is aimed at providing good quality, person-centred services in the right location at the right time, making a real difference for the people and communities we support. In Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland we work through a range of public health interventions, not only to address people’s drug and/or alcohol misuse but also to offer smoking cessation support and sexual health advice. In addition, we deliver an accredited peer mentor programme and support people to access education, training and employment opportunities. We offer a range of services to meet people’s needs from detox and residential rehab to supported living and aftercare support. We also utilise technology to ensure people are engaged with our services in a way that suits them. There are many paths to a healthy life – we work with people to find the path that’s right for them. That’s why every 30 minutes someone leaves Turning Point’s services drink or drugs free.

  • Anthony Marvin, Youth & Family Services

    I have been in the youth, family and community sector for over 20 years. I have been in and out of the foster care system and lived in some of the most deprived estates across Leicestershire. I have worked at Leicestershire County Council as a youth worker, a youth offending impact worker, inclusion worker, group leader, Supporting Leicestershire Families intervention worker and a detached youth worker. This led me to youth work in the private sector where I managed 3 centres in Melton Mowbray. I have also worked in education providing behaviour management and supporting students with SEN/SEBD. I then became an independent freelance youth officer and I set up LGBT Melton and Leicestershire and Rutland Youth and Family Support Services allowing me to provide an all-round support service to the young people and families of Leicestershire and Rutland. I am now proud to say that I am an awarding winning youth worker with recognitions from the former High Sheriff of Leicestershire, Leicester Pride and Victim First.

  • Mukesh Barot, Healthwatch

    I am the Deputy Manager for Healthwatch Leicester and Healthwatch Leicestershire. I represent Healthwatch Leicester & Healthwatch Leicestershire championing the views of local communities, listening to their experiences of health and social care. Healthwatch Leicester and Healthwatch Leicestershire work closely with the NHS & Social Care Providers to help them understand and respond to patients/carers experience of their services. My background includes Local Authority youth and community development as well as arts and community services management across Leicester. Within the Arts Council of England I lead on Cultural Diversity whilst also being Team Leader for Education and Lifelong Learning, Participatory Arts and Audience Development. I have over 9 years’ experience as Equality Manager at East Midlands Ambulance Service before moving onto specialist equalities advisory roles within East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust and Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

  • Pamela Sly & Anne Lawrence, Leicester Deaf Forum

    Leicester Deaf Forum is a voluntary organisation lead by Deaf representatives of local Deaf Community groups. L.D.F meet monthly to share information, discuss issues and access support for the Deaf Community where possible. L.D.F are always working hard to find solutions and also to encourage other organisations to make their information accessible and break down barriers. We also work closely with the regional representative of t he British Deaf Association (BDA).

  • Resham Sandhu, The Interfaith Network

    Our network works with faith communities, inter faith organisations, educators and others to increase understanding and cooperation between people of different faiths and to widen public awareness of the distinctive religious traditions in the UK. We achieve this through: supporting and encouraging inter faith initiatives and sharing good practice between these; helping create opportunities for mutual learning and tackling prejudice; and offering opportunity for engagement between faith communities and Government and other public agencies on relevant issues.

  • Samantha Smith, Transactive

    I am an activist and support worker. My mission is to create new services for transgender people in the East Midlands. I work with Leicester police and am a member of the CPS Hate Crime & Community Involvement Panel. I am dedicated to supporting marginalised transgender individuals and advocating on their behalf.

  • Colin Norman

    I have been Chair of a wide range of organisations e.g.Ratepayers Association, Parish Council, Local Council Committees, Tenants' Federation, Supporting People Service Users Forum. I served for 5 years as Chair of Three Oaks Homes, 3 years as a Shadow Board Chair and 9 years on the parent Board of emh group. Skills and experience include Diversity, Asset Management, Governance, Risk Management, Audit, Housing Management, Direct Labour Organisations, Care and Support, Customer Service, Finance, Welfare Reform, and Strategy. I was the Chair of Leicestershire Equalities Challenge Group (LECG) from March 2016 to March 2018 and Trustee Board member of Age UK Oadby & Wigston in October 2016.

  • Lynne Woodward & Jackie Newcombe, Leicestershire Police

    Embedding equality and diversity principles within Leicestershire Police is pivotal to 'protecting our communities' as well as providing an equitable workplace for all our staff. The Equality Unit provides specialist advice and guidance on all issues of diversity and equality which includes age, disability, gender, race, religion or belief, sexual orientation, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity and transgender identity. The unit is responsible for the management and review of the Equality Scheme and producing the annual reports and has specific responsibility for consultation and monitoring of the scheme.

  • Liz Waters, Hospice Hope

    I am a Community Engagement Worker for Hospice Hope, a charity in North West Leicestershire which provides support to anyone living with a life limiting condition through day respite care and support cafes. My role is to raise the profile of Hospice Hope, through engagement with a variety of different stakeholders and to increase the referrals into the service. I am currently involved with MARCH, a new national network looking at identifying the barriers in accessing services, and how to enhance engagement. I have also worked the Terence Higgins Trust, predominantly in health promotion, ensuring that hard-to-reach groups received positive sexual health messages, support and advice. I also trained organisations on HIV awareness and provided advice and information to the general public. I am currently studying for an MSc Behaviour Change, looking at how to create effective interventions to improve public health and wellbeing. I am a fellow of the Royal Society for Public Health and currently part of their special interest group on behaviour change.

  • Vicki Kainth, The Bridge

    The Bridge is a registered charity which has a strong reputation throughout the region. It delivers a number of housing related advice, support and assistance services to homeless and vulnerably housed people in the Borough of Charnwood, Leicestershire and Rutland, and has gained national recognition for developing best practice in a number of areas.

  • John Catt, Leicester Secular Society

    Leicester Secular Society is the leading organisation in the Leicestershire advocating and campaigning for an inclusive and plural society free from religious Privilege, prejudice and discrimination.

  • John Catt, Loughbrough & District Cycle Users' Campaign

    The campaign promotes cycling as the sustainable personal transport of the future, aims to improve ease and safety of cycle use and secure the changes necessary to enable cycle use to fulfil its maximum potential within Loughborough and the surrounding area.

  • Roland Hilton, Action Deafness

    "Now operating as a charitable company, Action Deafness is a leading provider of cost effective, bespoke service solutions for all people who are Deaf or who have hearing loss in Leicester, Leicestershire and many locations nationally.

    Our service mission is to deliver support, empowerment and equality for all our service users."

  • Julian Harrison

    After working in academia and then in rugby league development and promotion, Julian Harrison has spent the last sixteen years working in community engagement, development and in the specific areas of equality, diversity, community cohesion and human rights. He was Lead Officer in this field at Leicestershire County Council until September 2015, when he left to pursue a new career as an independent consultant. His identity as a passionate campaigner for human rights stems from his own mental illness (he has clinical depression and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). He devotes a lot of his time to encouraging a greater awareness and understanding of mental ill health and addressing accompanying issues of stigma and discrimination. He has spoken in the media, to organisations and in public on these matters. He is also an acclaimed writer, recently publishing a new book on the Holocaust.

  • Troy Young, AgeUK Leicester, Leicestershire & Rutland (LLR)

    AgeUK LLR is a voluntary organisation that exists to promote the well-being of all older people by helping to make life fulfilling and enjoyable. We are committed to the welfare of older people to maintain their dignity and recognise their value as individuals. We believe that dignity, privacy and independence can be preserved by providing opportunities for older people to develop new skills and knowledge, form and continue friendships and to have their views listened to, accepted and be made known. Our main aim is to develop sufficient and relevant services that reflect the needs and wishes of older people living in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland.

  • Rebecca Shaw, Genderversity

    I am a representative of Genderversity, a community support network for transgender and non binary people in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland. Genderversity is trans-led and trans-owned.

  • Anne Collier, John Storer Charnwood

    I am a volunteer at Shepshed Volunteer Centre, part of John Storer Charnwood, a Trustee of Shepshed Foodbank, Secretary of Leicestershire Life Education Centres Trust, Secretary of Iveshead Swimming Pool committee and Secretary of Shepshed Special Community Bus Management committee. Now volunteering in retirement, I have worked with schools and community groups in the City and County as a teacher, adult educator and community development worker.

  • Tadeusz Stenzel

    I am the President of the Polish Union, which promotes Polish culture and represents the voice of Polish groups, entities and organisations in Great Britain. I am also a member of the Leicester & Rutland Minority Ethnic Forum.

  • Emma Southern, The Prince's Trust

    The Prince's Trust believes that every young person should have the chance to succeed. So, we help 13 to 30 year-olds who are unemployed or struggling at school to transform their lives. Many of the young people we help are in, or leaving, care, facing issues such as homelessness or mental health problems, or have been in trouble with the law. The Trust has returned £1.4 billion in value to society through our help for disadvantaged young people over the last ten years alone. Our free programs give young people the practical and financial support they need to stabilize their lives. We help them develop key skills while boosting their confidence and motivation.

  • Michael Smith, Healthwatch

    I am the local manger for Healthwatch Leicester & Healthwatch Leicestershire and I work closely with the NHS & Social Care Providers to help them understand what the real patients/carers experience is of their services.

  • Sue Langley, LAMP

    Focus is primarily on those experiencing mental health issues and their carers in the community. This entails advocacy with elements of social return on investment and well being measures in order to make a difference to those who are vulnerable and excluded.

  • Ajay Aggarwal

    I am a solicitor, practicing in Leicester. My specialization is UK Immigration and Family Law.I am also a member of Leicestershire Aging Together, Voluntary Action Leicestershire, Leicestershire Law Society, Leicester City of Sanctuary, Madani School, Leicester University and the Leicestershire Interfaith Forum.

  • Helen Whittington, Alzheimer's Society

    The Alzheimer’s Society is the UK's leading dementia support and research charity, here for anyone affected by any form of dementia in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.We provide information and practical and emotional support to help people live well with dementia, and we invest in world-class research with the ultimate goal of defeating it. We also campaign to improve public understanding of dementia and the devastating impact it can have, and make sure it's taken seriously and acted on by our governments. At Alzheimer's Society, we believe passionately that life doesn't end when dementia begins. We are here for anyone affected by dementia, and we do everything we can to keep people with dementia connected to their lives and the people who matter most.

  • Leon Charikar, LCC Engagement and Consultation Manager

    I’m an Engagement and Consultation Manager for Leicestershire County Council (LCC). My role is to ensure that the Council adopts best practice when engaging and consulting with the public, service users and interested groups. I have worked for Leicester City Council, Leicestershire Partnership Trust and the Leicestershire Clinical Commissioning Groups. I am an active member of the Jewish Community and am a board member of the Leicester Council of Faiths.I am the main contact point at the County Council for the
    Leicestershire Equality Challenge Group and will help to support and develop the work programme.