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The end of all silos? Equalities minister pledges to support businesses to take the right steps to promote diversity


“Different organisations face different challenges in promoting equality and need to find the best solution for their business,” the minister for equalities Lynn Featherstone has said.

Speaking at The Employers Network for Equality and Inclusion (ENEI) House of Lords Reception last week, she added: "We are not proposing a one-size-fits-all solution or resorting to bureaucratic regulations to make this happen. We want to support business to take the steps that are right for them."

"This year has already seen the biggest ever jump in the number of women on boards, and some of the UK's leading companies are now reporting on gender diversity, which will help more woman rise to the top."

The event, entitled 'The End of all Silos', highlighted the equality and inclusion barriers that still exist in organisations across the UK.

Featherstone's comments were echoed by keynote speaker Harry Gaskell, Ernst & Young managing partner and leader of diversity and inclusion for the Ernst & Young UK business, who talked about how diversity and inclusion makes an organisation more profitable and effective, and how these benefits can only be unlocked with an inclusive leader who is able to create diverse teams.

Denise Keating, CEO, ENEI, said: "Since our launch last October, enei has been incredibly busy supporting employers across all of the protected characteristics within the Equality Act 2010.

"We are now clearly focussed on ending a silos approach to diversity which is underpinned by our six strategic themes of: agile working, unconscious bias, workforce representation, the global marketplace, inclusive leadership and access to opportunities. This reception brings together our members, friends and other leading thinkers to thank them for their continued support of ENEI.

"We are looking forward to a fantastic and exciting future."

Hosted by Lord Dennis Stevenson and sponsored by Ernst and Young, the Reception brought together over 120 representatives from major employers in the UK.

HR magazine has launched its inaugural Diversity Survey. We want to know your thoughts on diversity and get some ideas of how UK employers are addressing the challenge of developing an inclusive and equal workplace. Please spare 10 minutes to fill in our short online survey, by clicking here