Fairness Commission Chair

Ruth Redfern

Managing Director, You Must Be Wondering

“Right now we’re facing some of the toughest economic conditions we’ve seen in our lifetime. We all know that this is a time of public service cutbacks, but we need to ensure that the cuts which are made are fair for all residents of York, particularly those who are most vulnerable."

“The reason this Commission has been brought together is to make sure everyone in this city has a chance to say what their needs and their concerns are and can feel confident these will be presented to the Council and the wider community. I’m looking forward to providing an independent insight into York in 2012, to ensure a fair York of the future.”

You Must Be Wondering Ltd was founded in 2011 and provides bespoke productivity models for organisations going through change, Specialising in downsizing and restructuring, Ruth says that “it is possible for senior people to take their staff through change in such a way that they feel they have been part of a process which is as transparent and fair as possible and has led to the best outcome for them and the colleagues, creating a robust set of support mechanisms to help them develop the skills, tools, techniques and mind-set to develop their own plans for the future and carry them through”.

Formerly the Assistant Chief Executive of Yorkshire Forward, the Regional Development Agency for Yorkshire and Humber, Ruth was responsible for maintaining external relationships with stakeholders, partners, media and Government. Ruth was also the Director of HR at Yorkshire Forward and, following the announcement of its abolition, was responsible for the organisation entering into a change management phase swiftly, maintaining high morale and maximum productivity by implementing a bespoke Personal and Professional Development initiative for all staff and championing innovative approaches to organisational development in closure and transition.

Ruth’s campaigning for equality and fairness has spanned the length of her career, with early roles as a lecturer for deaf young people, a National Liaison Officer for PHAB, Co-ordinator for CHIPS and leading member of In-Valid? providing the backdrop for driving forward disability and diversity agendas through all areas of her life. Severely deaf herself, Ruth brought both her personal and professional experience to bear as the Chief Executive of Disabled Access to Technology Association (DATA), a training project for disabled adults, which became a European Centre of Excellence under her leadership.

Motivated by her commitment to equal rights for all, Ruth also held a successful political career as Chair of Community & Environmental Services, the first female Chief Whip of Bradford Council, a founder member of Bradford Congress, a Director of the Training & Enterprise Council and the Chair of Bradford City Centre Group.

Ruth is a life fellow of the RSA, a professional facilitator and coach, a published writer of both articles and poetry and a Practitioner of Neuro-linguistic Programming.

York Fairness Commission

What the Commission is doing now

The Commission formally completed its work in September 2012 with the publication of its final report: A better York for everyone. City of York Council has taken lead responsibility for delivering our recommendations.

York Fairness Commission