The Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) has adopted the United Nations Women’s Empowerment Principles (WEPs) as part of its commitment to promoting gender equality and women’s empowerment in the workplace, marketplace and community.
The WEPs are a set of Principles offering guidance to businesses on how to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment. Established by UN Global Compact and UN Women, the WEPs are informed by international labour and human rights standards and grounded in the recognition that businesses have a stake in, and a responsibility for, gender equality and women’s empowerment. WEPs are a primary vehicle for corporate delivery on gender equality dimensions of the 2030 agenda and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
Commenting on the development, the Chief Executive Officer of CSE Rajeeva Bandaranaike stated “Creating an empowering and inclusive environment for women to rise to their potential both in the workplace and community has always been a priority for the CSE. Over the years, CSE has remained strongly focused on creating an enabling culture for women working within the organization by ensuring that workplace related policies are gender sensitive and equal. We have a sound women representation in our workforce and more importantly, we see that representation translating into a strong presence of women in our management. CSE also works with local and international organizations to advocate for the greater participation of women in the Sri Lankan workforce, in corporate leadership and in entrepreneurship. The WEPs will provide a platform for CSE to further strengthen our women empowerment initiatives internally and in the community.”
The seven WEPs are built around establishing high-level corporate leadership for gender equality, treating all women and men fairly at work, respecting and supporting human rights and nondiscrimination, ensuring the health, safety and well-being of all women and men workers, promoting education, training and professional development for women, promoting equality through community initiatives and advocacy, implementing enterprise development, supply chain and marketing practices that empower women and measuring and publicly reporting on progress to achieve gender equality.
The Head of Human Resources at CSE Anoja Senanayake stated “CSE is already engaging in a number of women’s empowerment related initiatives covered by the WEPs and this move will further strengthen our efforts to ensure that we foster a truly inclusive, progressive, safe and productive workplace for all our employees. As a signatory, CSE will gain access to a number of tools and resources along with access to valuable insight into international best practices in gender equality and women’s empowerment.