Representatives from Circle Housing, Metropolitan and Notting Hill Housing will this Thursday (10th March) come together to discuss how women are being empowered at work and the progress that is being made towards gender parity.

The panel will be chaired by Paula Kahn, Chair of the Board for Metropolitan and Robert Kerse, Executive Director of Resources at Circle Housing will be introducing the event.

Alex Alexander, from the Diversity & Inclusion Team at Circle Housing said: “‘A recent study by Business in the Community found that less than half of the UK felt comfortable talking about gender in the workplace and we want to change this.

“The average gender pay gap in the UK - when you combine part time and full time employees - is around 19%. We believe that if we are to close the gap we should not only talk about the issue but look at what measures we can put in place to help reduce it.

“We want to attract good female talent to the sector and this is simply not possible without talking about gender and holding forums like our International Women’s Day event to bring it to the forefront of the agenda.”

Paula Kahn, Chair of the Board at Metropolitan, said: “Metropolitan is proud to support International Women’s Day. More than 60% of our colleagues are women – and their creativity, imagination and talent are critical to our success. We are passionate about equality for women and making Metropolitan an inclusive place to work for everyone. We are pleased to be taking part in this forum on what can be done to close the gender pay gap.”

Kate Davies, Chief Executive for Notting Hill Housing said: “I’m looking forward to a lively discussion with fellow housing professionals on the important topic of gender parity. Equality, diversity and inclusion have always been part of our ethos at Notting Hill Housing, and events like this are a welcome opportunity to explore the various issues that affect different groups of colleagues.”

The panelists are:

  • Addison Barnett – Basic Skills & Employment Team Manager – St Mungo’s
  • Adrian Shaw – Head of Ownership - Circle Housing
  • Kate Davies – CEO – Notting Hill Housing
  • Kulbir Shergill - Senior Diversity and Inclusion Consultant - KPMG
  • Sophia Khan – Solicitor - Metropolitan

Parity is the central theme for this year’s International Women’s Day (8th March). The World Economic Forum predicted in 2014 that it would take until 2095 to achieve global gender parity. Then one year later in 2015, they estimated that a slowdown in the pace of progress meant the gender gap wouldn't close entirely until 2133.