Executives and professionals in the UK insurance industry have signed up to the UN Women’s global initiative for gender equality.
Several industry leaders publicly made their pledges to ensure gender parity in the sector during Monday’s event organised by the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII
) and Insurance Institute of London.
UN Women’s National Committee chairman Laura Haynes said the insurance industry is the first professional body to commit to the global initiative, according to a report by the Financial Times.
“Having one industry, as one voice, pledging to make a difference, is the first for this campaign,” the publication quoted Haynes as saying.
The insurance profession is traditionally dominated by men but the industry “is committed to driving change,” said Sian Fisher, CII
chief executive and chairman of the Insuring Women’s Futures program.
Fisher lamented that women represent just over half of the UK population, and yet their access to and use of insurance financial protection is limited when compared to men.
“Recognising this, the insurance profession has taken a stand today to recognise that this is not a ‘gender’ issue. It is a risk for society and our male as well as female colleagues are showing their commitment to tackling it,” the Financial Times
quoted Fisher as saying.
Among those who made the pledge on Monday was Association of British Insurers (ABI) director general Huw Evans, who said that the industry has a “huge amount to do” to attract and keep women in the sector.
“Improving our sector’s diversity and inclusion is vital to our future success, not a ‘nice to have’,” he said.
“I have decided to focus my pledge on two areas that affect the talent we get in and retain within our great industry; at entry level and at future executive development,” Evans also said.
“I regularly find myself at insurance functions surrounded by men.”
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