What is Equity?

What is Equity?

Watch the following three videos before moving to the next step.

Take a Minute - Equality vs Equity

The following video describes equity in the context of healthcare.

Equity vs Equality - Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

What does Equality mean to you?


"Take a minute - equality vs equity." YouTube, uploaded by Conscious Leadership Academy, 10 Mar 2021, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PUP_D4Q3RrU.

"Equity vs Equality." YouTube, uploaded by Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, 6 Aug 2018, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MlXZyNtaoDM.

"What does Equality mean to you?." YouTube, uploaded by noted.co.nz, 26 Jun 2019, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=URQJJpE0d_s.

The above two videos exemplifies the differences between equality and equity. For the purposes of this course, we will define equity as such:

"Equity is providing support based on specific needs, and is manifested in fair access, equal opportunity, resources, and an ability to thrive in an environment of respect and dignity” (Wright, 2021).

NOTE: Equity in no way undermines equality; it simply provides the means by which we can achieve equality (Daisy, 2019).


Gauldin, Kristin, et al. “Equity vs. Equality - Diversity in the Classroom: Hand2mind Blog.” hand2mind, 1 Jan. 1968, https://www.hand2mind.com/blog/equality-vs-equity-in-education. 

Daisy. “Equality and Equity.” Social Change, 2019. https://social-change.co.uk/blog/2019-03-29-equality-and-equity. 

Why is Equity important?

Equity is important when it comes to solving many issues we in society today. For instance, equity can aid in the distribution of goods and services & ensuring fair treatment of citizens of a country (Jones, 2009). Equity can be used to reduce poverty and create social cohesion (Jones, 2009).

Below are some steps that can be taken to eliminate equity at the national level:

1) Challenge power imbalances. Power relations can cause and help sustain many inequities that are visible (Jones, 2009). A combination of empowering systematically disadvantaged groups, improving accountability mechanisms & lots of time can aid with tackling power imbalances.

2) Providing universal public services. This can include providing access to health care & education (free) whenever possible & improving the quality of these services by enhancing delivery methods and strengthening underlying institutions (Jones, 2009).

3) Social protection. Social protection mechanisms such as providing payments such as social insurance or basic income supports; minimum wage policies; and guaranteed government employment programs can ensure that no one falls below the minimum level of wellbeing (Jones, 2009).


Daisy. “Equality and Equity.” Social Change, 2019. https://social-change.co.uk/blog/2019-03-29-equality-and-equity. 

Jones, Harry. “Equity in Development: Why It Is Important and How to Achieve It.” ODI, https://odi.org/en/publications/equity-in-development-why-it-is-important-and-how-to-achieve-it/. 

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