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Tuesday, 20 May 2014

How important is equality, diversity and inclusion in life?

Not just in the workplace but college, school, society and social situations.  In the public domain recently we have had a number of examples of inequality, unacceptable behaviour, sexist attitudes and use of unacceptable language.

We have heard about male arrogance around sex, demeaning women on emails, abuse of position, power and posting inappropriate statements on social media websites.

The horrendous posting about Steven Sutton; Jeremy Clarkson allegedly using inappropriate language language and trying to explain away his action; we have had the John Terry outburst and the banana throwing incident at the AC Milan and Atlanta game, the Suarez and Evra incident and so on. I could cite many more, but there are  far too many to mention. When will this all end?

A much more serious question is when will high profile employers start to take the UK equality laws seriously? When will they embrace diversity and recognise that diversity makes good business sense? 

It is unfair that people are treated poorly based on race, sexuality, disability, etc. Not only is it unfair but it is illegal.

Managers, please train your staff, embrace diversity, value people for who they are and manage diversity.

Sunday, 8 December 2013

Nelson Mandela - free at last

In memory of Nelson Mandela

He made us proud
He made us free
Nelson Mandela
A great man was he

God rest his soul
God lay him to rest
Always watching over him
Knowing he was one of the best

He rescued South Africa and made so many free 
He made a difference for you and for me 
He united the crowds; he removed the barriers 
He truly was one of the worlds respected warriors

Nelson Mandela free at last 

Alyson Malach

STEM Practitioners Event - January 23rd 2014

Equality and Diversity UK Ltd will be holding an exclusive roundtable event for STEM practitioners around building equality into STEM SOW/Lesson plans sharing good EDI practice and the role of subject leaders on the 23rd January. 

The event will be held in Manchester. For more details or to request a place, please email

ASDA to offer "Nativity Leave"

Asda will offer ‘Nativity leave’ this year to allow staff to attend their children’s festive school play.
Following research from the supermarkets latest Mumdex report, working parents are worried about missing out on their child’s key milestones because of work commitments.

The research, which includes responses from 5,500 Asda mothers, reveals that one in three working mothers believe the annual Nativity play is one of the top things they cannot miss.

Hayley Tatum, Asda’s Executive People Director, says: “There’s no doubt working mums have a lot on their plate at this time of year and we don’t want our colleagues to miss out on the things that are really important to them this Christmas.

“Technology might help to take the pressure off busy working parents on a daily basis, but we know that it’s just not the same watching your child’s milestone moments back on a smartphone.
“‘Nativity Leave’ gives parents the opportunity to take time off for the school Christmas play or simply for some much needed family time outside of normal holidays.”

She added that this scheme would give Asda staff planned, unpaid discretionary time off to attend their child’s school play or to take off time outside normal contracted holidays.

Furthermore, the staff have two options: the ‘me time’ flexible working scheme, which offers unpaid, planned time off outside of holidays, or if they do not want to lose pay they can do a shift swap.

Asda said that ‘Nativity leave’ would not just apply to people with children  and would allow people to take time off to do their Christmas shopping, see friends, or for any other purpose, they do not need to give a specific reason.

Men taking over half of top HR roles

Men taking over half of top HR roles despite making up only a third of profession

Males are taking more than half of all top HR jobs despite representing only a third of the HR profession new research has indicated.

The findings from Harvey Nash found 53% of Chief, Vice President and Director roles were filled by men despite women making up 63% of the profession, an over-representation of 43%.

The company, which surveyed 900 HR professionals across eight countries, also found that men were 50% more likely to aspire to the role of CHRO.

Lisa Wormald, Director - HR division, Harvey Nash, comments: “Given how well represented women are in HR, you could be forgiven for thinking that gender diversity is not an issue. What this research shows is that there is hidden challenge in promoting female senior HR talent.

“From my own experience of recruiting senior HR professionals it is very clear that women are equally capable as men in performing their role. However when it comes to their career, men tend to be more confident and driven about ‘throwing their hat into the ring’ for senior opportunities. If women want to take more of the top roles in HR they need more of that male ‘naked ambition’.”

The progression of women from entry level to senior positions in HR does not compare favourably with other departments. For example, in IT, whilst only one in ten employees is female, the ratio remains the same from entry level through to CIO / Head of IT according to Harvey Nash's CIO Survey 2013 and Harvey Nash's Technology Survey 2014. This suggests that although there are less women entering the IT profession, a good proportion of them manage to climb the career ladder successfully, something that their peers in the HR industry appear to be struggling with.

The survey also found that employee engagement was the highest priority for HR professionals in 2014 with most planning to involve high performing individuals in succession planning and provide mentoring from senior leaders.

Part Time Professionals

The 2013 Power Part Time List has been announced today, revealing 50 of the most influential and successful part-time professionals.

The list, compiled by Timewise Foundation, includes successful individuals who challenge the notion that part-time work only suits those in junior roles and provide inspiration for others.

It also found that part-time bosses believe they do a better job than their full-time counterparts.
The list includes Andrea WarehamDirector of People, PrĂȘt a Manger (Europe) who is one of 8 directors on Pret’s Group Board. She manages a £5.5m budget and is in charge of  HR, recruitment and training operations across the UK, US, Paris, Hong Kong and Shanghai.

She says: “Clear thinking and the ability to see the bigger picture are crucial at strategic level.
“I find my working pattern gives me the space I need to achieve that. Part-time can help you to develop better leadership skills, too – as you delegate more, your team will grow to meet their new responsibilities."

Timewise Foundation co-founder Karen Mattison MBE comments: “These individuals are the face of modern work. In sharing their stories, we prove there is more than one path to success. Trailblazing employers who explore new ways of working, such as those listed in the 2013 Power Part Time list are leading the way, and amongst the very first benefit from some very clear and tangible business benefits – including the ability to attract and retain the best talent.”

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Black History Month

Black History Month
Believe me when I say,
Black people have contributed to this country in a very significant way.

They have been around a very long time,
fighting for King and Queen, right there on the front line.
They have worked in hospitals,
and driven the country’s buses.
But despite these contributions,
we are often asked what all the fuss is.
Why do we bother with Black History Month each year?
is a call I regularly hear.

A good response I have often heard
consists of these coherent words.
Because a people without history makes them invisible,
hard to see their contributions to the UK.
It erases their existence and their experience,
making discrimination seem right and OK.

We need the awakening consciousness of our history as our guiding tutor,
providing our children with a brighter future.
We need to remember that history belongs to the world;
we need the contributions of Black people to be unfurl’d.

Egyptians were black; the Pharaohs built pyramids to the sky.
We can’t collude with this massive lie.
The myth that Black people are recent arrivals,
the untruths that they just came to England to preserve their survival.

There is a gap, you see, in the education system.
Therefore, Black history month provides the opportunity for people to listen.

It promotes equality and tackles unlawful discrimination.
It provides us all with forgotten information.
It reminds us that black people have been here since the 16th C;
It allows black young people to feel proud and to feel free.

Free to tell the stories of their forefathers’ hard graft;
it puts a marker down for the future. And the past.

It helps Black young people to clearly identify
and to help them see beyond the historical lies.

The fact is Black people are successful,
they are creative and strong.
Black History Month provides them with an annual platform
to be seen. And to belong
So all of you that shout loudly that Black History month is a ‘waste of time’.
need to see that it’s an opportunity for people of colour to stand out and to shine

It is a time to right the inequalities of the past;
to big up the contributions of Black people, at long last.

EVERY day is a Black History Day.
A month does not show the progress in its entire array

However, a month does take the contributions of Black people from the shade,
from underneath the rocks, where forgotten memories are laid.

The month shows unity where before, this was forbidden.
It finally showcases the contributions where before, they were hidden
And it writes our history where before, it was untold
It leaves a legacy for our young people. To have and to hold

Alyson Malach