Global coalition launches to support and promote women in health and safety

 DSC0485Leading safety and health professionals across the world have joined together to form 1WISH, the Global Coalition of Women in Safety and Health-promoting inclusion across the health and safety profession

The purpose of the coalition is to forge positive, productive links between the various health and safety networks around the globe, and to bring about positive change and support better communication about the role and inclusion of women and other minority groups in the industry.

The coalition is supported fully by volunteers. By bringing together prominent leaders, inclusion pioneers and influencers at the forefront of new thinking on health and safety, the coalition is creating a knowledge bank which is ‘greater than the sum of its parts. 

Anne Gardner-Aston, chair of 1WISH, commented, “Women have so much to offer in the health and safety sector, but they are often overlooked or struggle to get their voices heard. The members of our coalition will be working together to communicate and support each other to find solutions to common issues.

“Important work is being undertaken by women in safety networks around the world. Without seeking to direct the work of these organisations, we are working together globally to uplift, support and share experiences to achieve greater diversity and inclusion within the profession.” 

Louise Hosking, the co-founder of 1WISH, explained, “Through this coalition we aim to create new opportunities and greater visibility via these networks, particularly showcasing the work of underrepresented groups. We want to promote creativity, innovation and mentoring in our industry by combining our skills and knowledge to assist career development. The coalition also includes emerging networks from countries with less established regulatory frameworks or with specific challenges from whom all members can learn.” 

Malcolm Staves, co-founder and corporate health and safety director at L’Oreal, also initiated a partnership with RoSPA to offer six funded places for women entrepreneurs to attend an accredited IOSH Leading Safely course and share their journey.

“Diversity and Inclusion is known to help business make better decisions. In health and safety, better decisions mean saving more lives. The coalition is a big step forward to a more diverse and inclusive profession #BeTheHummingbird,” Staves added.

The coalition’s inaugural congress will be held in partnership with HSE Global Series virtually on 9 March. Hosted by Louise and Anne this has been created to coincide with International Women’s Day with the theme #ChooseToChallenge. Leading health and safety influencers from around the globe will be speaking on a variety of topics to positively showcase the work of women within the profession. A further congress is planned for autumn 2021 focusing on the wider topic of inclusion.

For further information about the March congress, see https://hseuk.co.uk/women-in-safety/.

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