Launched in 2019, Empowers’ aim is to accelerate female and minority empowerment by promoting those organisations, women and men, who are reshaping the rules to achieve gender equality.
The campaign acts a strategic communications practice with a purpose – levelling the playing field between men and women, not because equality is the end goal, but because it is the starting point for creating a space of genuine value, worthiness and respect in society.
Empower is committed to launching effective, strategic, and compelling campaigns for organisations and people who are sympathetic to these goals or who want to incorporate them into their work and lives, both internally and externally.
The campaign has now built a collation of thought leaders from the worlds of politics, business, media and the third sector to campaign on behalf of women and minorities on a range of issues around the world. The aim is to use the network to increase women’s voices so that they’re truly heard by policy-makers and industry leaders.
Chair – Jacqui Smith
Jacqui Smith is a former Labour Politician who served as Minister for Women and Equalities, Health Minister and Schools Minister in Government. She was the first woman to ever hold the position of Home Secretary, from 2007 – 2009. Now, she is the chair of numerous charities and campaigns, including the Jo Cox Foundation, University Hospital Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust and Empower.
“Often when we talk about empowerment, we’re referring to a simple 50/50 split in opportunities between men and women. But the reality is, that, for the most part, women and men are still very unequal, especially in terms of representation. Also in terms of the roles that they are able to play and the way in which the business recognises their needs and contributions as leaders; as staff and as customers.”
In 2019 Empower launched with a panel event held in Parliament and hosted by Jess Phillips MP, calling for online misogyny to be recognised as more than just harassment.
The campaign focused on the Government’s Online Harms White Paper, and was successful in calling for online misogyny to be recognised as a hate crime. Empower generated public awareness and political pressure following a series of open letters, thought leadership pieces and expert roundtables.
In January 2021, Empower hosted an expert roundtable on job sharing with leading voices in politics, employment and campaigning to initiate the conversation on how to create a more equal workplace post-Covid.
A job-sharing White Paper, advocating for the benefits to both the employees and employers who take up this form of flexi-working, is to be released later in the year. This report will examine how job sharing can support gender equality in the workplace by retaining women in senior leadership roles and increasing work-life balance for working parents.
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