What is the Call for Evidence for?

The Archbishops of Canterbury and York set up the Families and Households Commission In March 2021 to find out about the pressures and challenges facing all families and households in England today. The Commission will offer practical proposals to the Church of England about ways to maximise support for all families and households, and offer information to other faith groups. In addition, the Commission will make recommendations to shape public policy and improve support both locally and nationally for families and households.

We will be issuing two separate calls for evidence: this first Call for Evidence invites adults aged 18 and over to contribute. The second, at a later date, will invite young people aged under 18 to contribute their experiences and ideas. 

Organisations and all groups working with individuals and families are invited to contribute to both Calls for Evidence as appropriate.

Who should respond to this Call for Evidence?

Individuals aged 18 and over from all kinds of backgrounds and cultures, including all faith groups and those with no faith.

Local and national organisations, groups, charities, mutual aid institutions, and church/faith institutions which support families and households.

What is this Call for Evidence about?

This first Call for Evidence is divided into four main sections which reflect the range of issues that the Commission is considering:

Section 1: This focuses on how Christian theology, traditions and teaching and the learning from other faiths can inform our understanding of family life and households.             

Section 2: This explores the understanding of the social history of families and households in England up to the present day, and the changing nature and expectations of family life, taking account of diversity, cultural differences and variations in living arrangements.

Section 3: This focuses on how to promote and support the well-being of children and young people and enable them to grow within stable, loving families, households and communities.

Section 4: This examines the building and sustaining of strong couple relationships, the role of marriage, civil partnerships and cohabitation in modern society, and ways to resolve conflict between intimate partners/couples and between individuals.
Responding to the questions

The Call for Evidence covers a variety of themes and includes a large number of questions. We would like everyone to answer the first three general questions before moving on to answer questions in some or all of the four sections. You are invited to respond to as many of the sections and to answer as many questions as you wish. However, there may be some sections and/or questions which are less relevant to you or your organisation and you may wish to ignore these.

We do not expect you to respond to all of the sections or all of the questions unless you wish to do so. Please select those that are most relevant to you.

The Commission is keen to learn from your own or your organisation’s experience and there are no right or wrong answers. The questions offer free text answers, but please restrict your answers to the boxes for each question. You might like to use bullet points or numbered lists to record key information. There is an opportunity at the end to provide any additional information that has not been covered in your answers.

When answering the questions, please do NOT refer to or provide any information (such as names,  addresses, locations) that may personally identify any individual. When a question asks you to respond from your personal or professional experience, please do not include any details that could personally identify anyone in your family or any individual that you or your organisation knows.

Please note that reference to ‘organisation’ in the questions always includes local and national organisations, groups of all kinds, voluntary and statutory agencies, charities, mutual aid institutions, churches/places of worship, and church/faith-based institutions.

Examples of good practice

We would like you to highlight examples of programmes and initiatives which provide support which you know makes a difference in the lives of individuals and families. These may be local initiatives offered by a church/faith group or community-based organisation, or those offered by a national organisation. Please provide information about and include links to specific programmes, reports and materials.

When giving examples please do NOT provide any information that could personally identify an individual or beneficiary. If you choose to provide case illustrations in respect of initiatives please ensure that they are anonymised and do not contain personal details that could identify the individuals/families concerned.

Background information

At the end of the questionnaire, we ask you to provide some background information about yourself or about the organisation you are representing. This information will never be shared with anyone outside the Commission and will remain confidential to the Commission.

If you are responding to the Call for Evidence in a personal capacity we ask for some general information about your age, ethnic background, religious affiliation if any, and gender. This information will be used to enable us to contextualise the responses we receive. You are not required to provide this information and there is an option to tick if you prefer not to answer any of these questions. The information you give will be confidential to the Commission and will never be shared.

If you are responding to the Call for Evidence on behalf of an organisation, we ask you to provide some information about the organisation. We will not share this information with anyone else or any organisation outside the Commission.

What happens next?

Following the Call for Evidence, the Commission will analyse the data received and plan a number of focus groups and evidence days around England to consider certain themes in more depth. 

At the end of this Call for Evidence we ask whether you or your organisation would be willing to contribute further at a later stage in the Commission’s work and/or attend some of the activities. If you are willing to contribute further to our work we ask you to provide details as to how we may contact you to tell you about the Commission’s activities. There is no obligation to provide contact details if you would prefer not to contribute further to the Commission’s work and do not wish to be contacted.

If you do provide contact details to enable us to contact you, these will never be shared with anyone outside the Commission and we will seek further permissions to include you and/or your organisation in these activities before inviting you to participate in them.

When you have completed the Call for Evidence and answered as many questions as you wish, please remember to press SUBMIT at the end to ensure it is received by the Commission.

Privacy and Confidentiality

The Commission respects the confidentiality of all the information that you provide in this Call for Evidence. All the information you provide to the Commission will be kept securely and in compliance with the UK General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and Data Protection Act 2018. This requires us to follow data protection principles to ensure that the information you give is used fairly, lawfully, takes into account people’s rights and is kept safely and securely.  Your personal details will never be shared with anyone outside the Commission team, and individuals and organisations will not be named personally in Commission reports and presentations unless you or your organisation have specifically given permission to be identified by name. 

We ask for permissions to use the information provided at the end of the Call for Evidence and it is important that you check these before pressing Submit and submitting your contribution.

The information provided will be analysed by members of the Commission and researchers working with them and will be treated confidentially at all times. When we have analysed all the information collected during the life of the Commission we will prepare reports about the findings for the Archbishops of Canterbury and York. We may draw on information you have provided about specific programmes and initiatives if you have given permission for this, and the Commission will always attribute the contributions appropriately. The findings may then be shared more widely through presentations and articles. Permissions will be sought if any individual or any organisation who have provided evidence to the Commission are to be named.

The information you give to the Commission will be archived securely after publication of the findings. You can find out more about the Commission's privacy policy here.

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* I consent to the use of my data as described in the Privacy Notice.

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* Willingness to participate in the Call for Evidence 

Before responding to the Call for Evidence please check the following statement to indicate that you have read this information and that you are willing to participate. If you are not willing to participate and tick ‘No’ you will not be able to proceed with the Call for Evidence online and will exit the survey.

I am at least 18 years old and I have read and understood the information about this Call for Evidence, including the privacy and confidentiality statements, and how the information I provide will be used by the Archbishops’ Commission on Families and Households.

I voluntarily agree to participate in this Call for Evidence.