Welsh Government Sets Quota For Women On Boards

Equalities minister in the Welsh Assembly emphasises importance of getting women back into public roles

The Welsh government has set a 40 per cent female quota for boards in an aim to readjust gender imbalance.

Jane Hutt, the Equalities Minister in the Welsh Assembly Government, has emphasised the role needed to be played by public sector bodies, political parties and the media to get women back into public and political roles.

This proposal follows research indicating that female appointments to boards of executive bodies funded by the Welsh government fell from 38 per cent in 2009 to 35 per cent in 2012 and in NHS bodies from 48 per cent to 47 per cent.

The 40 per cent quota is inspired by Sport Wales. The organisation’s chairwoman Laura McAllister has successfully encouraged a larger number of women to make up the Sport Wales board.

Making the application process more ‘gender friendly’ and approaching possible candidates directly, their initiatives have seen the number of the women on the board increase from one to five in 2012. Furthermore, the Welsh Assembly has been inspired by the Norwegian government, who has implemented a similar 40 per cent female quota on company boards.

Ahead of International Women’s Day this Friday, McAllister welcomed the quota for restructuring the public sector, stating the importance of ‘all organisations to play their part in helping us achieve this ambitious target’.

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