Brown Thomas Arnotts, Aon and Laya Healthcare recognised for commitment to diversity and inclusion

Luxury retailer Brown Thomas Arnotts, global insurance firm Aon, and Laya Healthcare are amongst the latest companies to receive accreditation from the Irish Centre for Diversity for their commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion in the workplace.

The Irish Centre for Diversity runs the ‘Investors in Diversity Ireland’ initiative, Ireland’s first and only all-encompassing equality, diversity and inclusion mark. The initiative is supported by Ibec and the DCU Centre of Excellence for Diversity and Inclusion. Companies that join the initiative are provided with a framework that offers tools to measure and improve their diversity and inclusion (D&I) policies and practices, whilst also recognising their efforts through accreditation at Bronze, Silver and Gold levels.

Brown Thomas Arnotts received Bronze accreditation in recent weeks, having successfully demonstrated it has effective D&I policies in place; effectively communicates these policies to all staff; and provides D&I training for all company leaders.

Laya Healthcare and Aon, meanwhile, have both achieved Silver accreditation, which – on top of the requirements for the Bronze level – entails a staff-wide survey to measure the culture and embedding of best-practice D&I measures in the workplace.

Brown Thomas Arnotts, Laya Healthcare and Aon are joined by the likes of AIB, Matheson, Bank of Ireland, Enterprise Ireland, Pramerica, Irish Rail, the HSE and Three as participants in the ‘Investors in Diversity Ireland’ initiative.

Commenting today (08.09.20), Caroline Tyler, Director of the Irish Centre for Diversity, said: “We launched ‘Investors in Diversity Ireland’ in 2019, and we now have companies across a wide range of industries participating in the initiative, with demand from interested organisations growing month by month. Participants range from well-known consumer brands to state agencies, and from SMEs to global firms.

“They are all at different levels of their D&I journey. Some are just starting out, and are working towards achieving our Bronze accreditation, while others have deeply embedded and effective D&I strategies in place, and are working with us to measure the effectiveness of those strategies, and to truly embed D&I within their business. Laya Healthcare was one of our first corporate partners, for example, and has worked with us in a very proactive way over the past 18 months. In addition to advancing diversity and inclusion in their own organisation they are also offering our diversity and inclusion training to their corporate clients.

“2020 has been a particularly interesting year for our work. It has been good to see that, even in the face of Covid-19, companies are continuing to devote time and resources to ensuring they promote and embed diversity and inclusion.

“Alongside Covid-19, however, 2020 has also witnessed the growing prominence of the Black Lives Matters movement, and – in some parts of the world – growing discrimination against people of colour and LGBTI+ people. These global trends are, of course, impacting on Irish workplaces – employers are increasingly conscious of the need to meaningfully embed D&I in their organisations. Companies are being held accountable by their staff; they are asking the question, ‘What are we doing to ensure fairness for all in our organisation?’. Embedding best-practice D&I policies and actions is not just the right thing to do; it’s also expected by customers, suppliers and employees.”

Donald McDonald, Managing Director of Brown Thomas Arnotts, said: “We are incredibly proud to receive Bronze accreditation from the Irish Centre for Diversity. We pride ourselves on being an inclusive and dynamic workplace. We know that – by embracing different perspectives, welcoming different voices, and leveraging our collective strengths – we will become the best workplace we can be.”