Defence Intelligence Gender Equality Group
The Gender Equality Group (GEG), started in 2015, is run by a group of passionate employees, driven to volunteer their time to improve gender diversity and culture in Defence Intelligence (DI) to make it an even better place in which to work. It is the first ever gender focused group in DI, representing a watershed in the organisation’s effort to create a more equitable workplace. The group started by gathering data to understand the scale of the challenge. What we found then surprised us- women in DI comprised only 35% of the workforce (compared to 53% for the Civil Service), 20% of middle management and 0% of senior (SCS) leadership (compared to 38% in the Civil Service).The most improvement has been seen in the numbers of females at B1 level. In 2015 this was 1, in December 2018 this had risen to 4. Female Band Bs now comprise 24% of the cadre in the organisation, and DI is now appointing a female SCS, its first for a while.
The GEG is action–orientated and wants to make a real difference. The GEG has already:
• succeeded in raising awareness of D&I issues and challenges amongst senior management and more widely across the DI estates resulting in the funding and appointment of a team of 5 D&I and Wellbeing staff;
• successfully campaigned for CDI to appoint a Shadow Governance Board;
• successfully lobbied for mixed-gender recruitment panels;
• rolled out a gender language tool across DI;
• promoted the roll out of mentoring circles;
• encouraged members to set up and support the DI schools outreach programme; and
• supported the Suffragette Centenary celebrations and helped facilitate the flying of the flag at Wyton in October 2018.
Finally DI, for the first time, was included in the Intelligence and Security Committee review of diversity and inclusion across the UK intelligence community; the GEG was acknowledged as playing a vital role and is working with DI senior management to take forward the recommendations.