Diversity is core to business growth

For the first time, The Employers Forum on Age (EFA) and The Employers Forum on Belief (EFB) are joining forces to create one must-attend conference and award ceremony for all HR and Diversity directors and specialists.

The event is taking place on 26th February 2009 and will focus on issues surrounding age, religion and belief in the workplace, including speeches by prominent decision makers in the diversity arena.

The nature of the workplace is continually evolving to accommodate new ways of working, and with the current economic uncertainty, HR departments need to be more strategic than ever. 

Age when related to redundancy can be particularly emotive and presents a difficult balance for employers to strike.

The ‘One size doesn’t fit all’ conference will explore how HR professionals can comply with best practice and make decisions that are best for their business.

Sessions will offer HR departments advice to achieve a truly flexible way of working, helping to solve retention issues and reduce workplace conflict, thus getting the best out of all employees. 

The EFA awards will showcase and share the work of forward-thinking employers who consistently champion solutions to discrimination.
 
The day will include speeches by key commentators, including Trevor Philips, Chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission and Dame Joan Bakewell, Voice of Older People.

Trevor Philips will open the conference with a key note speech outlining the main issues facing discrimination in the workforce today, whilst Joan Bakewell will speak over lunch about her role in raising the profile of age equality issues and encouraging public debate around age discrimination. Dame Joan will also present the EFA awards.
 
The day will have sessions giving guidance around conflict resolution – as in the recent cases involving issues of belief and sexual orientation or dress codes and religious practice, and then provide advice on how to deal with such incidents.

There will also be a focus on how to avoid making assumptions and stereotyping people in order to foster greater understanding in the workplace, enhance staff retention and improve productivity.

The final speaker, Joe Staton of the Future Foundation will outline expectations on what the future holds for the workforce and employers.
 
Catharine Pusey, Director at The EFA says: “As employers know, people cannot be segmented into single equality strands, an employee is not just a name, but someone with a gender, an age, a race, a sexual orientation, a faith or belief or set of personal values, and possibly a disability. Preparing for a future in which the workplace develops multi-strand integration is vital.
 
“That’s why we have created the ‘One Size Doesn’t Fit All’ Conference. Those organisations which embrace a diverse workplace are best placed to recruit and retain the very best employees.  In line with the new Single Equality Bill and the increase in cases that deal with more than one strand, we have dedicated the day to focusing on this key issue.”
 
The conference is taking place on 26 February.

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