New UK aviation minister welcomes industry’s commitment to gender diversity as Charter tops 100 signatories

New UK aviation minister welcomes industry’s commitment to gender diversity as Charter tops 100 signatories

Baroness Vere of Norbiton has been appointed as the UK’s new Aviation Minister and will oversee government matters related to aviation, including international security, regulation and Brexit.

New UK aviation minister welcomes industry’s commitment to gender diversity as Charter tops 100 signatories

Baroness Vere of Norbiton has been appointed as the UK’s new Aviation Minister and will oversee government matters related to aviation, including international security, regulation and Brexit.

At a parliamentary reception event last week, Vere welcomed the action taken by more than 100 UK aviation and aerospace companies in pledging to set targets on gender diversity and publish their progress annually.

Aviation and aerospace companies including TUI, Flybe and Thomas Cook have all agreed to sign the Women in Aviation and Aerospace Charter, which commits companies to create a more gender-balanced workforce and a fairer industry for women.

Supporting organisations also agree to set targets around creating a more gender-balanced workforce, and to assign a board member to implement those targets.

100 companies  sign Charter

AJW Group, which supplies aircraft parts is the hundredth company to sign the charter, following in the footsteps of Thales and Heathrow Airport. easyJet – one of the first companies to sign – has set a target to ensure 20% of its new pilot entrants are female by 2020.

Other signatories of the charter include Farnborough International, ADS, Leonardo, Manchester Airport Group, London City Air Group, Babcock, Airbus, Gatwick Airport and Rolls-Royce.

Baroness Vere said: “I am delighted to be joining the Department at such an exciting time. Aviation and aerospace are great industries to work in and the support of these 100 companies is an important step towards greater gender diversity. I hope that more companies will sign the Charter and I will be challenging the sector as a whole to do more.

"If any business is to have the highest quality workforce, diversity must play an important part. And I am delighted that so many companies have recognised this and are doing something about it. I look forward to working with them.”

Promising progress 

Katherine Bennett CBE, Co-Chair of the Women in Aviation & Aerospace Charter and Senior Vice President at Airbus, said: “The Women in Aviation and Aerospace Charter has made great progress since it was launched last July. Seeing so much commitment from the aviation and aerospace industries to work towards gender equality is promising for our future.

“Today as we celebrate the Charter’s 100th signatory, we have taken a huge step towards making greater gender diversity in our industries a reality. I hope this is just the start of many great things in our journey towards gender equality in aviation and aerospace.”

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