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International Women's Day

International Women's Day logoInternational Women's Day (IWD) takes place on the 8 March each year and focuses on celebrating women's achievements and increasing visibility, while calling out inequality.

Find out more about International Women's Day

We are committed to celebrating diversity and promoting equality in everything we do, to improve the quality of life for everyone living, working and visiting Cheshire West and Chester.

Our workforce is predominantly female, with just over 70 per cent females. At the start of our journey, we recognised that the representation of women reduced the more senior the role.

We're now pleased to be able to report that we now have similar proportion of women across all grades. Our ongoing work in this area means that our mean gender pay gap is just 1.8 per cent, which is considerably lower than other local authorities.

As an organisation we support all employees equally, in all aspects of their lives, however International Women's Day is an important celebration of all of our inspiring female staff and their achievements.

You can get involved on Twitter using #EachforEqual.


Message from Councillor Louise Gittins

Councillor Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council, said: "International Women's Day allows us to focus on being a woman and the amazing things we do every single day.

"We don't always allow ourselves time to think but I'd like everyone to take the time to think about the difference women make, that you make to your family, friends, work colleagues and communities.

"Let's celebrate women, brave women everywhere who are inspiring others and trying to make the world a better place.

Maya Angelou reminds us 'Nothing can dim the light that shines from within' so go out today and sparkle."

We recognise that women can sometimes face challenges in the workplace, particularly as they progress into leadership roles.

Five years ago, the Council launched a programme specifically to support women to develop into leadership roles. Over that time as part of the programme, we have created a network of women across the organisation, we have hosted events and provided resources focused around some of the challenges that women can experience. This has included how women raise their profile, balancing work and home life and imposter syndrome among others, all with the aim of supporting women in the workplace.

  • We have our own Women Into Leadership Programme which is a great opportunity for us to get ideas on how we can share experiences and see how we can support women to move in leadership positions
  • Flexible working hours and flexible mobile working to help with child care
  • Favourable maternity policy

We realise that it is important to empower and support everyone in the workplace, we do this in a number of ways including:

  • Employee Assistance Programme which provides a counselling support service for any personal, work or family issues 24 hours a day/7 days a week/365 days a year
  • The Council is a Disability Confident employer. The scheme is designed to help recruit and retain disabled people and people with health conditions for their skills and talent.
  • An embedded Equality and Diversity Policy
  • Championing LGBT equality
  • We offer a wide range of working options and flexible mobile working options such as reduced hours, flexible working hours and home working at all levels of the organisation - this has also included a job share arrangement at Director level too. These options are available for all of the workforce and we see a range of flexible working options in place for both men and women across the organisation.
  • Both paternity and maternity policies

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