Who are the Fairness Commissioners?

The Commissioners are non-political and completely independent of the Council. They were appointed for their professional expertise and their personal commitment to fairness and social justice in York. 

The Commission had a sponsor, a chair and four commissioners.

The sponsor was Dr John Sentamu, Archbishop of York. 

His role was to shape and promote the aims of the Commission and to endorse its findings. He attended public meetings alongside the Commissioners to hear the views of York residents and other stakeholders and worked with them to develop recommendations to the Council. 

The Chair was Ruth Redfern, Managing Director, You Must Be Wondering. The deputy Chair was John Lister, one of the commissioners.

The role of the chair was to act as a Commissioner and to:

ensure that the Commission fulfilled its purpose by shaping agendas, managing the business of the meetings and ensuring that everyone had the opportunity to participate

ensure that the Commission had the information and support that it needed  to be able to do its work 

The four Commissioners were:

John Lister, Group Chief Risk & Capital Officer, Aviva Life UK 

John Kennedy, Director of Care Services, Joseph Rowntree Housing Trust

Richard Wilkinson, Professor Emeritus of Social Epidemiology, University of Nottingham Medical School 

Kate Pickett, Professor of Epidemiology, University of York Dept of Health Sciences 

The role of the Commissioners was:

  • To agree and shape the aims and methodology of the Commission including the consultation approach and the information and research requirements 
  • To attend and participate in a series of public meetings to hear the views of York residents and other stakeholders 
  • To review the analysis of the evidence, submissions and other feedback received from residents and groups
  • To agree final findings and recommendations and report these to the Council’s Cabinet in November 2011
  • To hold a second round of consultation with partners and stakeholders spring 2012 with the aim of producing a more detailed analysis of how the city as a whole can contribute to making York a fairer place. The final report to be published September 2012.



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