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Interview: Angela Mason on trips to Skegness, Maoists and briefings with the minister: A life in equalities work

Shona Hunter (School of Sociology and Social Policy, University of Leeds, UK)
Elaine Swan (Lancaster University Management School, Bailrigg, Lancaster, UK)

Equal Opportunities International

ISSN: 0261-0159

Article publication date: 3 July 2007

Abstract

Purpose

To explore the experience of a key member of the UK equalities policy‐making elite, interrogating her shift from activist to top‐ranking equalities professional. To focus attention on the under‐explored area of lesbian, gay bisexual and transgender equalities work.

Design/methodology/approach

The interview is prefaced with a critical commentary on current UK equalities policy, contextualising the interview discussion, which links personal and collective histories and provides a comparison of equalities work over time.

Findings

Angela Mason, while top‐ranking civil servant, continues to claim the label activist. Like a variety of other equalities workers she uses multiple tactics to appeal to different constituents at different times and in different contexts.

Originality/value

This is an interview with one of the key protagonists in the development of UK equalities policies over the last 30 years. It is unique in its focus on the current overhaul of UK equalities policy from an “insider” and in its timing at the interim point of this reorganisation (October 2006).

Keywords

Citation

Hunter, S. and Swan, E. (2007), "Interview: Angela Mason on trips to Skegness, Maoists and briefings with the minister: A life in equalities work", Equal Opportunities International, Vol. 26 No. 5, pp. 482-496. https://doi.org/10.1108/02610150710756676

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2007, Emerald Group Publishing Limited