Our Services and Projects


Support and Advice service

The Support and Advice Service is a confidential service which provides free and impartial advice for individuals who:

  • Need housing and benefits advice
  • Have suffered from discrimination
  • Need assistance in working with public bodies
  • Need to report a hate crime

If we’re unable to help, we’ll help you take your case to an appropriate organisation that can.

You can either approach us directly or be referred to us by another agency. ELREC will consider all requests for assistance. If your complaint falls outside of the scope of the Equality Act of 2010 and/or our services are inappropriate for you, we will, with your consent, of course, refer you to a more appropriate agency.  For example, in complex cases ELREC may refer the case to the Equality and Human Rights Commission.

Before coming to see us, if you are able to, try to write down what happened and when. Dates are very important as there are strict time limits for bringing legal claims. We will listen to your case and make an assessment. If we are able to assist you, then we will work together with you in helping you prepare your case, identifying your options and deciding on your best course of action.

The Support and Advice Service is funded by the Scottish Government and also provides benefits and housing related advice.

To report an incident or get more information contact ELREC.

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Policy Development

ELREC has a strategic role to work with and unify other organisations, groups and communities who share our aims. Together we seek to identify, challenge and re-address all forms of prejudice and discrimination. Some of the partnerships ELREC is currently involved with are as follows:

  • Edinburgh's Hate Crime Strategic Development Group (HCSDG)
  • Children & Families Services Equality Monitoring and Implementation Group
  • East & Midlothian Community Planning Equality Forum
  • SESTran Equalities Forum
  • Scottish Enterprise Equal Opportunities External Advisory Group
  • West Lothian Public Partnership Forum for Health and Care Services

ELREC can assist individuals/organisations for the following:

  • Develop a Equality Scheme or Equal Opportunities Policy
  • Deliver Equality and Diversity Training
  • Assist with impact assessment
  • Conduct consultations or Focus Groups with communities and Protected Characteristics* groups.

    * The nine Protected Characteristics in the Equality Act of 2010 are age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation

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Funded by the Big Lottery Young Start fund, this project will function in three areas in Edinburgh including Craigmillar, Broomhouse/Saughton and Gracemount/Southhouse. The main objective of the Young People Against Hate project is to bring young people in these areas to work together to develop an educational package or campaign to raise the awareness about the damage of hate crime in their community and encourage others to do more to tackle the problem collectively.

For more information regarding the project please contact our Youth Development Officer, Nick Greener at ngreener@elrec.org.uk

Below is a video created by our YPAH volunteers and developed by Fixers UK on Hate Crime and Third Party Reporting.


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youth Zone


The Youth Zone is space created for all young people (16-25 years old) in Edinburgh with different cultural backgrounds who are looking for employment or higher education. If you are interested in improving, developing or perfecting your employment skills (communication, critical thinking, confidence or self-esteem) and are interested in learning how to improve your CV, what TO DO and NOT TO DO at a job interview and meet other young people in your community, come join us.

We provide support and advice for you every step of the way.

If you are looking for a job, volunteering opportunity, increase your work experience or choose an academic path, The Youth Zone is for you. If you are unsure about what you want or where to start, The Youth Zone can help. If you are thinking about College, higher education or entering a profession and need some guidance, The Youth Zone is here.

The drop-in sessions take place every Wednesday from 4pm-7pm  at ELREC's (Edinburgh and Lothians Regional Equality Council) offices on Forth Street.  

Join in, meet some great people!!

Send an email to globo@elrec.org.uk if you have any questions.

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Third Party Reporting

Third Party Reporting (previously known as Remote Reporting) is a way of reporting a crime, including Hate Crime, or passing on information without talking to the police directly. There are a number of different organisations, including ELREC, throughout Edinburgh (E Division) and Lothians and the Scottish Borders (J Division) of the Police Service of Scotland area where victims, witnesses, carers or others can speak privately to a member of staff, and we will pass your information onto the police.

ELREC provides Third Party Reporting as a free service. To Third Party Report Hate Crime please contact us by calling 0131 556 0441 or email us at admin@elrec.org.uk and we will get in touch with you.

Third Party Reporting is not suitable for incidents that require an immediate response or urgent contact with the police. In such cases, the use of emergency number 999 is recommended.

The 101 non-emergency number will make it quicker and easier for you to contact the police when you don't need an emergency response, for example to:
• speak to your local police officer
• report a crime that's already happened, such as a theft or damage to property
• get crime prevention advice
• make the police aware of any policing issues in your area

For more information on Third Party Reporting and how you can Third Party Report a crime, including Hate Crime, please click here.


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Equalities Engagement

The Equalities Engagement project supports public bodies to engage with diverse communities and community organisations to positively advance the Public Sector Equality Duty in Edinburgh and the Lothians. The project also progresses the capacity and participation of diverse communities across Edinburgh and the Lothians. Our Equality Engagement Officer is responsible for facilitating communication between communities of protected characteristics* and mainstream services.  We are always looking for ways to work with a variety of communities of protected characteristics*.  We welcome opportunities to speak to any group and communities about their experiences and issues they may have.  If you would like us to visit you, please contact ELREC or our Equalities Engagement Officer, Mizan Rahman at MRahman@elrec.org.uk

  • For equality and diversity related events being held by ELREC please click here
  • For equality and diversity events in Edinburgh, East Lothian, Midlothian and West Lothian please click here.

* The nine Protected Characteristics in Equality Act of 2010 are age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation


Diversity in Public Life (new)                                                        

A new project has launched to increase engagement of diverse members of communities in democratic processes and public life across the Edinburgh and Lothians. This new initiative is an extension of ELREC’s ongoing Equality Engagement Project which is supported by the Scottish Government Equality Fund.

Various activities will be undertaken to identify actions which can be taken to enhance engagement of the BME community and women in public life and the democratic process.

The project will also address issues identified that limit and foster participation of stakeholders and community into public life.

If you are interested to get involved contact: Mizan Rahman, Equality Engagement Officer E-mail: mrahman@elrec.org.uk, tel: 0131 556 0441.

For more information please see the brochure by clicking here

A poster is available here

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TRUE (Tackling Racism, Uniting Everyone) Colours is a student group that meets from our premises on Friday afternoons from 2:30pm to 4pm and is supported by a team of ELREC staff and volunteers led by Project Coordinator, Una Dosen. Their objective is to fight racism, discrimination, bullying and sectarianism in schools and to promote good relations. Please contact ELREC if students and/or your school would like to participate in this group and we shall facilitate contact with the group. Please click here to visit the TRUE Colours website or go to: http://truecoloursorg.weebly.com

Click here for the TRUE Colours Facebook page

Click here for the TRUE Colours Youtube page


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Barriers of Poverty and Inequality

        Barriers of Poverty and Inequality is a six month study funded by the Big Lottery’s ‘Investing in Ideas’ programme and its aim is to shine a light on barriers that might be perpetuating the experience of poverty for ethnic minorities in Edinburgh. The research is based on work conducted by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation which tells us that some ethnic minorities are disproportionately and consistently experiencing economic poverty.

        Ultimately this will benefit the people affected by poverty. It will provide insights into the personal experiences of stigma, and help bring about informed solutions and tailored services. This study is conducted with a view of addressing gaps in policy. The results will be forwarded to project partners as well as published by ELREC.

        Previous research by Joseph Rowntree Foundation indicates that there are three ethnic minority groups whose experience of poverty is outstanding and disproportionate; Pakistani, Bangladeshi and African, and we are looking for participants who have heritage from these areas. We recognise that poverty is complex, multi-faceted and dynamic, and that it has relative as well as absolute dimensions. If you or someone you know is experiencing these issues or has been affected by these issues then we would like to hear from you. We encourage participation from individuals of any age, gender or religion whose heritage is of the ethnic groups outline above.

        If you would like to participate, or you know someone who would want to participate, or simply want to ask more about the research, please get in touch with a member of the research group by sending an email to admin@elrec.org.uk. Please include the following details in your response; address, ethnicity, age and gender, information of any disability, and your contact email address or phone number.

We look forward to hearing from you.


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The Communities for Conservation project seeks to engage with diverse minority communities together to understand, empower and address in diverse initiatives on energy efficiency, reduction of carbon emissions and climate change.

The services and activities we offer are free and are designed for ethnic minority communities in Edinburgh. If you are from ethnic minority community living in Edinburgh, you can sign up for the following:

  • Professional Home Energy AUDITS targeted to Polish, South Asian, African and Chinese households. Those will enable you to monitor your energy consumption and become more energy efficient. We will also offer some eco- devices. We only have limited spaces for those.
  • Food growing training sessions in different sites in Edinburgh.
  • Workshops on cooking, gardening and managing food waste.
  • Carbon discussions every two month at the office

For further details about the project and to participate to any of the above please contact  Jean-Matthieu (JGaunand@elrec.org.uk), Parveen (PIshaq@elrec.org.uk), Ewelina (ELukaszek@elrec.org.uk), David (DTai@elrec.org.uk) or Adil (adil.ibrahim@elrec.org.uk). You can also call us at ELREC on 0131 556 0441. The team members speak English, Urdu, Cantonese, Polish, French and Hindi.

We will also hold community events with many activities and keep you all updates. You can join our facebook group by Clicking here


Video: Green Keepers group at the Royal Botanic Gardens as part of the Edible Gardening Project. In the video you can see the plot that ELREC was given and some of our volunteers. ELREC has a number of gardening projects around Edinburgh. Please get in touch if you are interested in getting involved.


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Bright Choices is a new service run in partnership between ELREC, Sacro, and the Multi-Cultural Family Base.

The project is there to support people who have difficult relationships with their families or their communities. These difficulties can stem  from a disagreement about how people are supposed to dress, behave, who to marry, how to treat their children, if they are allowed to finish their education and who they are allowed to have as friends.

Bright Choices is funded by the Big Lottery for four years and will include direct work with communities to raise awareness of the service and to improve understanding of honour and how it can affect people’s lives.

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