PSOJ launches Gender and Disabilities Affairs Committee

PSOJ launches Gender and Disabilities Affairs Committee

Sunday, August 04, 2019

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The Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica (PSOJ) and the United Nations Win-Win: Gender Equality Means Good Business Programme - a partnership with UN Women, the European Union and the International Labour Organization, joined forces recently to launch the PSOJ's Gender and Disabilities Affairs Committee, under the theme: Progress Towards an Inclusive Jamaican Workforce.

With the objective of gender equality and inclusion in the workplace at the fore, among the main agenda items for the Gender and Disabilities Affair Committee, include to further the Win-Win programme; to increase women's economic empowerment and leadership as the basis for sustainable, inclusive and equitable growth and promote the business case for gender equality – through the private sector.

President of the PSOJ, Howard Mitchell, in his address to the audience emphasised that although there is an increase in the rate at which females are being employed, they are not being selected for C-suite positions. He highlighted that globally women are paid less than their male counterparts and are rarely integrated as CEO's or political leaders. Mitchell said, “more men need to be a part of the integration process to ensure its success.”

Ambassador Malgorzata Wasilewska, Head of Delegation, Delegation of the European Union to Jamaica in delivering her remarks, spoke to the differing mindsets between men and women when applying for top level executive positions. She said, “women may ask the question am I ready for this whereas men assert – I deserve this.”

Several women CEOs attended the luncheon, including the PSOJ'S CEO Makeba Bennett-Easy, Island Grill's Founder Thalia Lyn, Pro Comm's Jean Lowrie-Chin and Totally Males Sandra Williams.

Attendees were introduced to the Women's Empowerment Principles (WEP) and pledged their support by signing the mandate, which expresses support for advancing equality between men and women to bring the broadest pool of talent to corporations.

National Private Sector Specialist — Jamaica UN Women Win-Win Programme, Dr Denise Chevannes-Vogel, during her presentation delved into the principles of WEP and expressed that she was looking forward to the ongoing working relationship with the PSOJ.

Bennett-Easy in delivering the closing remarks, highlighted that this initiative is special to her as a human capital development specialist – and one she will be personally overseeing; she is anticipating the integration of the WEP principles in more Jamaican organisations.

Thirty-one companies have already signed the WEP pledge. They are:

Women Entrepreneurs Network of the Caribbean, Rubis Energy Jamaica, Jamaica Stock Exchange, JMMB Group, Sandals Foundation Ltd, Facey Law, Island Grill, ProComm, Honey Bun, Stocks and Securities Ltd, Zinergy International, Home Choice Enterprises, Price Waterhouse Cooper Jamaica, JPS & Partners Credit Union, Flow Jamaica, Jamaica Manufacturers and Exporters Association, BenLar Foods, Red Stripe, LASCO Chin Foundation, First Global Bank Ltd, Nestle Jamaica Ltd, Wisynco Group Ltd, Sankard Springvale Products, Chocolate Dreams, Pow Social Internet Income Jamaica, Cornerstone, Lifespan Company Ltd, Pure National Ltd, Glocal Customs Brokers & Freight Forwarders, Myers Fletcher & Gordon Trust and Finance, and Sagicor Bank Jamaica.

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