The Federation of Wholesale Distributors and the Association of Convenience Stores are to produce an industry behaviour charter after the FWD’s chief executive stressed the need to tackle harassment.
The ‘Dignity at Work Charter’ will launch on 28 June at the FWD conference.
It aims to set behaviour standards that companies can sign up to and include in their own policies.
Speaking ahead of the charter announcement at a Women in Wholesale networking event in London this week, FWD chief executive James Bielby stressed the need to be “clear and firm on harassment” and more gender inclusive. “This is a statement of intent,” he said. “We want to be an inclusive place. We are nowhere near where we need to be until we are 50-50 [male-female split in the sector].”
Research to analyse the challenges facing industry employees is currently ongoing through a working group in order to ensure the charter is relevant.
ACS chief executive James Lowman said the ACS and FWD would be asking companies to support the charter and to confront the behaviour that leads to employees feeling uncomfortable or excluded.
“The convenience and wholesale sectors are fantastic places to work, learn and develop skills, and the relationships that are forged across companies make this one of the most exciting industries to be part of,” said Lowman. “The charter will capture the best of these relationships and interactions between people from different companies working together and engaging at industry events and in day-to-day trading.”