Earlier this month at Needs x HeForShe, we attended a panel focusing on Parenthood in Music, curated by SheSaidSo.
Among many thought provoking points was the Working Forward pledge – a campaign run by the Equality and Human Rights Commission to improve workplaces for pregnant women and new parents.
In 2016, the UK Music Diversity Survey found that while women between the ages of 25-34 made up 54.5% of the workforce, that number drops significantly to 32.7% for women between 45-64. There are considerably fewer women than men in senior roles. This begs the question – are women in music forced to choose between career progression and raising a family?
According to Music Business Worldwide, there is a significant lack of flexible working within the industry, as well as unsupportive attitudes from colleagues. Many original job roles change on return from maternity leave and in some extreme cases, workers are made redundant and forced to sign a non-disclosure agreement.
One label to sign up to the Working Forward pledge is Ninja Tune, home to artists such as Peggy Gou and Kate Tempest. The pledge has four main action areas – leadership, employee confidence, supporting line managers and flexible working.
We hope to see more companies across the industry take the pledge and help bridge the gap between gender inequality, as well as foster a more supportive and open-minded environment.