At Design Plus, Laleham and the wider DCC group we would like to use International Women’s Day (IWD) as an opportunity to celebrate the valuable contribution and achievements of all of our female colleagues. We can all be part of the movement to create a diverse, equitable and inclusive world. This year's theme is #BreakTheBias, reinforcing the message that we can all choose to call out gender bias and inequality, both in and out of the workplace. 

What is International Women's Day?

The concept of International Women’s Day came around in 1908 when 15,000 women marched through New York to demand better pay, shorter working hours and the right to vote. Following a four day wartime strike in 1917, when Russian women demanded 'bread and peace', the provisional government granted women the right to vote. As the strike began on the 8th of March, this became the date that International Women's Day is celebrated. 

Why do we celebrate International Women's Day?

It has become a date to celebrate how far women have come as a collective within their social, economic, cultural and political achievements. The first gathering occurred in 1911 supported by over a million people and has been celebrated on the 8th of March ever since. 

How do people celebrate it?

For some, IWD is a national holiday. In China, many companies offer female employees a half-day on International Women’s Day, so that they can spend the afternoon celebrating female empowerment. In Italy, 'la Festa della Donna' is primarily celebrated by the giving of bright yellow Mimosa blossom flowers, which are viewed as a symbol of female strength and sensibility. Many simply wear the colours of IWD; purple green and white which originated from the Women's Social and Political Union (WSPU) in the UK in 1908. Purple is said to signify justice and dinity, whilst green represents hope, and white demonstrates purity. 

We invite you to help #BreakTheBias

In our Employee Survey, the need for more job development opportunities was highlighted. We are currently sponsoring women on a variety of courses from apprenticeships to Masters’ degrees, and will be launching other learning activities. We want to encourage our employees to talk with their manager about self development, take advantage of any on-the-job training and consider other job opportunities arising in the business.

We are very fortunate to have strong female representation across the business and we have many examples of women developing their careers at Design Plus, Laleham and the wider DCC group. To celebrate International Women's Day this year, we invite you to share your story on social media using the global IWD slogan #BreakTheBias #IWD2022We encourage all to use your voice and provoke conversation on gender equality in business and the workplace.