Barnet Council is hosting a series of events to mark International Women’s Day this week (Wednesday 8 March).
Week-long events at council offices at the North London Business Park (NLBP) and Barnet House include a photo wall featuring inspirational women chosen by staff and donations for a women’s refuge including essential toiletries, items for babies, toys, colouring books and non-perishable foods.
During the week staff have also been donating women’s and men’s clothes and accessories to people in need these items for job interviews and starting new jobs. Donated items will be delivered to Smart Works and Suited & Booted, two charities that help women and men look good and feel confident to increase their chance of successfully getting back into work.
On Wednesday, NLBP will host exhibition tables from Solace and domestic violence partners, Victim Support, Unison, HR Employee Benefits, and health screening.
There will also be a panel of inspirational speakers from 12.30pm, including Solace and domestic violence partners; Victim Support; Paula Light, Superintendent (Community Participation) for the Met Police; Julie Ballesteros, Health Professional; Karen Morrell, Head of Mental Health Services; Unison; and Anisa Darr, Director of Resources at Barnet Council. The speakers will be covering topics including domestic violence, policing from a woman’s perspective, health and screening, mental health, employment and development and women in the workplace.
All men working at Barnet house have been invited to bring in baked cakes or cooked dishes to share with colleagues on Wednesday.
John Hooton, Chief Executive of Barnet Council, said: “Gender equality is a priority for me as Chief Executive and also to me personally. I believe strongly that workplaces that have leadership and perspectives from both men and women are better organisations and make better decisions. I also have three daughters and it causes me to think a lot about girls’ and women's rights across the world and how much more needs to be done to further gender equality.
“I think it is important to recognise that furthering gender equality is about men changing behaviours, as well as empowering and supporting women. This may be about men as well as women working flexibly or sharing maternity and paternity leave, as well as valuing the different perspectives that men and women bring to the workplace.”