Reinsurance News

Re/insurance industry calling for inclusive workplaces

4th July 2018 - Author: Luke Gallin

Global insurers and reinsurers, along with brokers and other organisations across the insurance industry, have collaborated to establish the Inclusive Behaviours Pledge, designed to alter behaviours and develop a more inclusive work environment across the industry.

Lloyd's of London insurance and reinsurance marketThe Pledge was founded by Lloyd’s and Zurich, and includes companies such as RSA, AXA, Marsh, and Willis Towers Watson, as well as industry bodies such as The British Insurance Brokers Association, the Association of British Insurers, the Lloyd’s Market Association, and the London & International Insurance Brokers’ Association.

Overall, 50 firms have signed up and collaborated to show the insurance and reinsurance industry’s commitment to transforming its culture. A statement announcing the Pledge explains that it addresses all forms of potential discrimination in the workplace, including age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage/civil partnerships, pregnancy/maternity, family and caring responsibilities, race, religion/belief, gender or sexual orientation.

Outgoing Lloyd’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Inga Beale, commented: “Having worked in the insurance sector for 36 years, I’ve seen just how far it has come, particularly in the last decade. I’m proud of the progress that has been made, but the job isn’t over yet. The Inclusive Behaviours Pledge is a public commitment reinforcing our promise as individual organisations, and as a collective, to challenge inappropriate behaviour and create increasingly welcoming and inclusive workplaces for the diverse talent powering our sector.”

CEO of Zurich UK, Tulsi Naidu, added: “My experience is that the insurance industry is a great place to work but we do still see examples of bad behaviour and that’s why we think this pan-industry initiative is so important.  We believe the Inclusive Behaviours Pledge will send a clear signal that the leadership of our industry is committed to working together to drive out inappropriate or discriminatory behaviour.  We want our current and future employees to be confident in the insurance industry as a sector that is inclusive and welcoming to all.”

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The Pledge includes a number of CEO-level commitments, with an obligation for them to have clear policies and procedures in place for reporting any discrimination or inappropriate behaviour in the workplace.

Interim CEO AXA UK & Ireland and Executive Sponsor for Diversity & Inclusion, Bertrand Poupart-Lafarge, said: “At AXA UK we are committed to achieving truly inclusive behaviour to make our business as diverse as the customers we serve. I am delighted to sign this pledge reinforcing our stance that all our employees are treated with respect, courtesy and dignity, embracing and valuing all our differences.”

While Richard Pryce, CEO, QBE European Operations, added: “I’m delighted to sign this CEO Pledge and add QBE European Operations to the list of insurance companies standing up for inclusive behaviours and encouraging appropriate conduct in the workplace. I pledge to lead an organisation that has a workplace culture where the unique ideas, capabilities, and experiences all our people bring to the office are valued and respected.”

After confirming that it has signed the Pledge, the British Insurance Brokers Association’s CEO, Steve White, commented: “Insurance broking is much richer for having a diverse range of people employed in it. The Pledge addresses discrimination and signatories agree to promote behaviours that encourage inclusivity and eliminate discrimination. Our commitment to the Pledge reflects our 2018 Manifesto commitment to support diversity of all kinds and to promote equal opportunities.

“The coming together of the insurance sector in signing this Pledge signals a positive change in attitude and we are proud to be a part of it.”

Organisations can read about and sign up to the Pledge online via a dedicated website, which also provides members with an ‘Inclusive Behaviours’ toolkit, which is designed to help with enforcement.

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