Women have been impacted differently to men by the measures put in place to manage Covid-19. The two sectors hardest hit have been hospitality and retail, which both employ significant numbers of female workers. What’s more, only 1 in 10 of low earners have been able to work from home, and we know that 69% of low earners are women. The Institute for Fiscal Studies and the UCL Institute of Education found in May that mothers were 47% more likely to have permanently lost their job or quit. Additionally women working from home are more likely to have done the majority of the childcare and household chores than their home-working male partners.
Diane Bunyan - Diane convenes the Bristol Women's Commission Economy Task Group. She is a trustee of Bristol Women's Voice and Watershed Arts Trust. Diane works, nationally and internationally as a consultant on human rights and gender equality and was the first-ever women leader of Bristol City Council.
Annabel Smith - Annabel is a leading player in the coordination of the One City approach that Bristol is taking and has been pivotal in bringing people and organisations together from across the city to make that happen in her role at the City Council. She is an expert in the gendered impacts of economic policy.
Sandra Gordon - A businesswoman, a magistrate, and a member of the Women in Business Task Group that launched the Bristol Women in Business Charter in 2019 (and now a Director of the CIC that runs it), Sandra is a member of the Mayoral Commission on Race Equality.
The panellists, shared their perspectives and their expertise with the online audience, focusing on what Bristol businesses are doing and can do to make the recovery from the crisis more inclusive and to begin to rebuild a fairer economy. Sandra Gordon told those listening that cultural change within businesses was key and that “leadership on equality in organisations is everyone’s responsibility, not just the CEO’s”. Annabel Smith was positive about Bristol’s ability to deal with and recover from the crisis: “We’re a city that’s not afraid to disrupt the status quo. The One City Approach has given us a framework for collaboration and the governance methods to support the recovery that other cities are now scrambling to put together”. Diane Bunyan too was hopeful, “Things do change” she said “We’ve got the skills, we’ve got the knowledge, and we know what needs to be done. We need to translate that into action now.”