Thursday, 9 April 2009
Women in senior positions
I recently read an article based on a survey conducted by Grant Thornton that the UK is behind the Philippines in appointing women to senior posts. The survey lists the UK at 26th place in the world with just two thirds of firms employing women in high ranking positions. The Philippines came top with Russia second and China not far behind.
What is interesting about these stats is that the common perception, or popular notion, that it would be Europe that leads in this field is not correct and the figures show clearly that the developing world is far ahead on this. The stats also show that we need to be doing more as Trade Unionists to breach this gap of disgrace.
The broad picture, as suggested by the survey, brings some home truths to light too through personal experience. In Lambeth, for example, the employer has always had major problems dealing with this challenge and whenever a senior appointment of a woman chief officer is made it has usually been followed by their quick demise. I can name names to illustrate this but I will not to protect the officers in question. There is something wrong with a system that allows this situation and more action should be taken. I can only congratulate Unison for taking steps by introducing the concept of proportionality to deal with our own problems in this respect.