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To prepare for the High Speed Two (HS2) Phase 2b (Crewe to Manchester and West Midlands to Leeds) hybrid Bill, the government has commissioned consultants to undertake an Equality Impact Assessment (EQIA) and prepare an EQIA report. The EQIA will identify any particular groups with protected characteristics that may be disproportionately affected, and actions that may be necessary to limit such effects if they arise.
The Scope and Methodology Report (SMR) is a technical document which outlines the approach that will be taken to the assessment in the EQIA. The SMR does not include assessment findings. Findings will be contained within the final EQIA for the Phase 2b route.
We are now asking local authorities, relevant statutory consultees and national interest groups along the route to comment on the draft EQIA SMR, which will inform the way in which the EQIA is undertaken.
A separate consultation on the draft Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) SMR is running concurrently. Please clearly mark on your response form which consultation you are responding to.
The Secretary of State for Transport recently announced the government’s decision on the route for the next phase of HS2: Crewe to Manchester and West Midlands to Leeds. This part of the route is expected to open in 2033. To obtain the legal powers to build and operate this part of the railway, the government intends to deposit a hybrid Bill in Parliament during 2019.
Confidentiality and data protection
Consultation responses will be published on a publicly accessible website. Individuals’ names, addresses or signatures will not be published. However, please do not include information in your response that could identify you, unless you are happy for it to be made public.
If you do not want any of your response to be published, you should clearly mark it as ‘Confidential’ in the subject line of the email or at the top of your letter.
All information provided in response to this consultation, including personal information, may be subject to disclosure in accordance with access to information regimes - these are, primarily, the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA), the Data Protection Act 1998 and the Environmental Information Regulations 2004.
Under the FOIA, there is a statutory Code of Practice with which public authorities must comply and which deals with our confidentiality obligations, amongst other things. In view of this, it would be helpful if you could explain in your response why you regard the information you have provided as confidential. If we receive a request for disclosure of the information you provide, we will take full account of your explanation, but we cannot give an assurance that confidentiality can be maintained in all circumstances. An automatic confidentiality disclaimer generated by your IT system will not, of itself, be regarded as binding for the Department for Transport or HS2 Ltd.