International Confex 21’s Association Event Forum saw its seventh session of Day 1 held under the title ‘Championing diversity, equality and inclusion together’. The panel discussed what event associations were doing to support the vision of an events industry where diversity, equity and inclusion are not just words, but relate to action.
Speakers for the event included: Caroline Jackson, vice-chair of the Business Visit and Events Partnership (BVEP); Heather Lishman, associate director of ABPCO, Michael Adeniya, chair of the D&I Working Group for the Event Industry Alliance; and Claire Fennelow, executive director of EVCOM.
Fennelow said: “The pandemic gave use time to think, which in many ways was fortunate. It became clear in many avenues we conduct ourselves in that diversity was not an inherent aspect of its practices and the industry.”
Adeniya added: “Currently it seems that individuals fall into the events industry rather than choose it. To make this industry more progressive, we need to try to create equitable pathways for individuals to get into the events industry.”
Finally, in terms of how events businesses can help promote their diversity and inclusion, Jackson concluded: “The best thing is to become a member of an events association because you can’t do this by yourself, especially if you’re a small business. Associations offer you a shortcut as they have already inputted the initiatives and programmes that can help.”
For further information on International Confex 21, visit here.