WrB London: Diversity, Inclusion and the Bottom Line

WrB London: Diversity, Inclusion and the Bottom Line image

In the build-up to launching WrB London – Responsible Gambling, CSR and the Bottom Line, conference producer Layla Ali looks at one of the key focuses of the event, diversity and inclusion, and discusses what the gambling industry could do to improve on it.

In the build-up to launching WrB London – Responsible Gambling, CSR and the Bottom Line, conference producer Layla Ali looks at one of the key focuses of the event, diversity and inclusion, and discusses what the gambling industry could do to improve on it.

On 22 May 2018, I attended KnowNow’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion in the Gambling Industry event in London. It was a great event; well organised, positive and informative, and it got me thinking more deeply about diversity and inclusion in gambling. More specifically, it made me question what more the industry could do to promote diversity and inclusion, and how Clarion, as an events company, could help. 

The first presentation of the day was by the Chief Executive of the Gambling Commission, Neil McArthur. He spoke about assumptions and unconscious bias, how innate and deeply held they are, and the importance of being aware of your own. Quoting a 2016 headline from The Guardian, Neil shared his experiences of being stereotyped as a so-called “pale, stale male”, and talked about how the realities of his career path and the challenges he faced are not reflected by his LinkedIn profile, or biographies published about him. In the first instance, it was very valuable to hear someone from a traditionally privileged demographic talk about experiencing discrimination. Not because he experienced it but rather, because it came as a much-needed reminder that diversity is about much more than just accepting another group into the status quo. So often, those of us who are fighting for equality or representation get tied up in our own struggles, and it can be easy to forget about bringing others up with us. Neil’s speech was a prime example of how equality and inclusion applies not just to gender, but to socio-economic and educational backgrounds as well. 

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