Wednesday, September 7, 2022

News: New Diversity and Inclusion Group launched by Barnsley & Rotherham Chamber


Barnsley & Rotherham Chamber has launched a new working group to help businesses across the region play their part in celebrating and recognising diversity in the workplace.

Aimed at helping to eliminate unlawful discrimination and to create a fairer, more equal society, the new working group will provide both employers and employees with the chance to shape policy, celebrate achievements, as well as being able to find out more about planning changes in legislation. The working group will also provide a safe space, allowing victims of discrimination to share their experiences and access support.

One of the first working groups of its kind to be launched by a local chamber of commerce in the UK, Barnsley & Rotherham Chamber’s Diversity and Inclusion Group will meet regularly throughout the year and examine a wide range of subject areas including race, gender, religion and subcultures, as well as helping employers to address stereotypes and prejudice in the workplace.

Following the inaugural meeting, Cllr Lyndsay Pitchley was elected as chair of the new group. Combining her joint responsibilities of running her own business, as well as working as an elected councillor, Lyndsay acts as chair of Rotherham Council’s Improving Lives Select Commission. In 2019, she was presented with the International Athena Women in Business Award for Leadership, and during her recent career, she has acted as an advocate for Barnsley & Rotherham Mind.

She will be supported in her role by experienced financial adviser Jamie Lowe, director of True Self Wealth. With more than a decade of experience working in the financial services sector, Jamie has developed a particular specialism in supporting members of the LGBTQ+ community.

Lyndsay Pitchley, Chair of Barnsley & Rotherham Chamber’s Equality and Diversity Working Group, said: “I hope we can all play a part in shining a spotlight on the prejudice that still exists in many workplaces across the region. Our new working group aims to offer support and help to individuals who have previously faced discrimination in their working lives, as well as bringing together employers and employees from across the region who are committed to driving positive change.

"I hope the work being undertaken by the group will help to empower the representation of many under-represented individuals, groups and communities as well as helping businesses to create an environment where everyone can prosper.”

Carrie Sudbury, Deputy Chief Executive, Barnsley & Rotherham Chamber, added: “Working groups are an important element of work delivered by local chambers of commerce. They give businesses a chance for their views to be heard by decision-makers and in many cases can directly influence policies being considered locally, regionally and even nationally.

"We believe everyone has the right to achieve their full potential. The launch of our new Diversity and Equality Group builds on the work we have successfully delivered to champion gender equality in the workplace over the past decade, helping to empower individuals and support businesses in creating a fair and equal workplace where everyone can fulfil their potential.”

The Diversity and Inclusion Groupis one of seven working groups hosted by Barnsley & Rotherham Chamber, which also include Health & Wellbeing, Construction, Policy, Manufacturing, Transport and International Trade. Any business wishing to get involved with the Chamber’s working groups can find out more by contacting Barnsley & Rotherham Chamber.

BR Chamber website

Images: BR Chamber


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