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Equal@Work Toolkit: Women of Colour in the Workplace

The Equal@work Platform is a space for employers, trade unions, public authorities and NGOs to collaborate for innovative solutions to diversity management. Members of the platform explore how to integrate an anti-racist approach; ensuring improved access to the workplace for people of colour and an end to structural discrimination in the labour market. This toolkit was produced as a follow-up to the Equal@work seminar on women of colour at work, organised by the European Network Against Racism in December 2017.

There has been great progress in institutional and corporate diversity policies relating to the recruitment and advancement of women in the workplace. Gender equality has become a priority of diversity management, with employers across Europe making progressive leaps to counter discrimination against women, improving representation in leadership, and moving toward equal pay and conditions for women.

How far do these numerous gender equality and diversity initiatives benefit all women? An emerging critique of diversity policies is that they fail to address the specific barriers faced by women of colour in the workplace. In other words, diversity policies are not intersectional; they do not address how discrimination and inequality on the basis of gender is experienced with other forms of discrimination, such as racism and religious discrimination.

Women of colour experience heightened discrimination and exclusion, and yet are under-served by policies, legal frameworks and initiatives designed to combat these trends. The 9th Equal@work toolkit aims to fill these gaps, exploring workplace inclusion at the intersection of race and gender with a focus on women of colour in Europe.


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