“Employers Confederation of the Philippines (ECOP), as the official representative of the Philippine employers, pledges its full support to this Call to Action. We believe that each and every employer must ensure that their policies and programs promote diversity, inclusivity, and gender equality,” Mr. Sergio Ortiz-Luis Jr., ECOP President, said in his solidarity message during the launching of the International Labor Organization (ILO) Research Brief Leading to Success: The Business Case for Women in Business and Management in the Philippines held on 23 September 2020 via Zoom.
The Research Brief presents evidence on how greater gender diversity across different levels of the workforce creates business benefits for enterprises, including higher profitability and productivity, increased ability to retain talent, and greater creativity, among others. It is based on a global enterprise survey on women in business and management with almost 13,000 businesses in 70 countries, 389 of which are companies from the Philippines.
During the event, Executive Director of the Philippine Women’s Economic Network (PHILWEN) / Philippine Business Coalition for Women Empowerment (PBCWE) Julia Abad presented the Call to Action for the business community’s adoption of and commitment to a culture of strategic change to promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace.
The Call to Action sets out key priorities and specific commitments for businesses, professionals and organizations in the Philippines to endorse as a first step to collection action to achieve these goals.
“The evidence is clear: gender diversity and inclusion is good for business, the economy, and the society. This advocacy needs to move forward,” Ms. Abad stated in her presentation.
As a response to this call, Mr. Ortiz Luis Jr. announced that ECOP will be unveiling a strengthened and reinvigorated Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) Committee.
“Through this initiative, ECOP signifies its strong commitment of championing diversity and empowering all genders in the workplace,” Ortiz-Luis asserted.
ECOP had established its own Women and Gender Committee many years back but has admittedly been inactive. According to Ortiz Luis, the inspiration for the new D&I Committee has been inspired by its various initiatives on women empowerment and gender development in partnership with PHILWEN/PBCWE and the ILO.
“Be assured that ECOP will never waver in its support to the ILO, IW, and PHILWEN/PBCWE in this endeavor and we stand ready to provide any and every assistance necessary for the entire business community to heed this call All stakeholders need to work together to maintain and accelerate gender diversity at all levels. As the Philippines recovers from the COVID-19 crisis, we need to work with businesses to ensure that companies can use this moment to design and put in place policies and practices that can support gender diversity.”
“Workplace gender equality is not a women’s issue, it’s a business issue. Our research is showing that women’s ever increasing participation in the labour market has been the engine of global growth and competitiveness. While progress has been made towards advancing gender diversity in company boards and senior leadership, more can be done to integrate gender diversity as a strategic business choice. We need to use the current crisis as an opportunity to build enterprise resilience, and gender diversity must be a part of this resilience strategy. Having women in top positions is simply good for business and makes companies more resilient,” says Deborah France-Massin, Director of the ILO Bureau for Employers’ Activities.
The launch was co-organized by ECOP with the ILO, Investing in Women (IW), and PHILWEN/PBCWE.
Call to Action: