Creating a fairer Britain
Women still lack power and influence in Wales
As 100 years of International Women’s Day (Tuesday 8 March) is celebrated around the world, a new report finds that women remain severely under-represented in positions of power and influence in Wales.
The Commission’s Who Runs Wales? 2011 report looks at ten areas of Welsh life, including politics, local government, health and the private sector in order to assess the gender balance at decision-making tables in Wales.
Key findings include:
Kate Bennett, National Director for Wales, Equality and Human Rights Commission, said:
“This report shows that women remain severely under-represented at the top tables in Wales.
“Our organisations are paying a penalty - evidence shows that more diverse management teams take better decisions.
“If those making the decisions are drawn from a narrow section of society, most people’s needs will be overlooked. Our report highlights the need for political and business leaders to find the best way to take advantage of the full talent pool in Wales.
"Good intentions are not enough - this issue is too important to be left to chance. It is the responsibility of leaders to get more women to the top tables in Wales.”
The National Assembly has a healthy gender balance, with 48% women. But it is inevitable this percentage will drop significantly at the May election.
The report finds some areas of progress. Cheryl Gillan is Wales’s first female Secretary of State. Kirsty Williams is the first female Party Leader at the National Assembly. Julie Lydon of the University of Glamorgan is Wales’s first female vice-chancellor. April McMahon will become Wales’s second female vice chancellor when she takes up post at Aberystwyth University.
All statistics were collated in the period – January 2011 to February 2011