Umbrella maritime charity backs groundbreaking Women in Transport survey


Merchant Navy Welfare Board is proud to sponsor the survey that aims to drive positive change in the transport sector

The transport sector is about to embark on a transformative journey towards diversity and equity with the official launch of the Women in Transport Equity Index Survey.

This groundbreaking initiative, introduced at the Women in Transport Annual General Meeting on 26 June 2023, aims to revolutionise the industry by providing crucial baseline data, recognising best practices and driving positive change.

The Women in Transport Equity Index survey will be live and open for registration from 3 July 2023. This momentous occasion marks a significant milestone in the ongoing efforts to promote diversity and inclusivity within the transport sector. The Index seeks to identify and address the real gender diversity in transport-related positions, fostering an environment where all individuals have equal access to opportunities and resources.

“We are thrilled to announce the official launch of the Women in Transport Equity Index survey,” said Sonya Byers, CEO of Women in Transport.

She added: “This initiative represents a paradigm shift in the industry, providing a comprehensive framework to measure and drive progress towards greater diversity and equity. We invite all UK transport sector companies to register and participate in this transformative journey.”

Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Women in Transport, Ruth Cadbury MP, highlighted:

“This is a significant point in the quest for a more diverse and equitable transport workforce. The APPG for Women in Transport is proud to support Women in Transport’s Equity Index Initiative. By fostering inclusivity and highlighting best practices, we hope to inspire other sectors to follow our lead, creating a ripple effect of positive change across industries.”

The Women in Transport Equity Index survey consists of 10 mandatory and 10 optional questions, carefully designed to ensure efficiency while capturing essential data. Optional questions include intersectional aspects, further enhancing the understanding of workforce dynamics within the sector. Participants who complete the index questions will gain free access to a light version of the information hub, which offers invaluable resources and templates for fostering diversity and inclusion within their organisations.

Upon completing the full survey, participants will receive an overall score across the ten equity standards, individual scores and a comprehensive 25-page report featuring benchmarking data. Top-performing companies will be featured in the comprehensive report (with their permission), with the top five companies in each sector index (at their discretion) receiving a prestigious certificate of success recognition and a marketing badge dated to signify their commitment to diversity and equity.

We are honoured to have the support and sponsorship of esteemed industry leaders, including the Merchant Navy Welfare Board (MNWB), Bicycle Association, Kier, and Mobility Lab. Each organisation shares our vision for a diverse and inclusive transport sector and is committed to driving positive change.

Stuart Rivers, Chief Executive of MNWB which is the umbrella charity for the UK Merchant Navy and Fishing Fleets, said:

“The Merchant Navy Welfare Board is proud to sponsor the Women in Transport Equity Index. We believe in fostering a maritime industry that reflects the true diversity of our society, and this initiative aligns perfectly with our strategic aims. Together, we can create a more inclusive and equitable future for the maritime sector.”

Steve Garidis, Executive Director of the Bicycle Association, emphasised:

“As a sustainable, inclusive mode of transport, cycling – and the cycle industry – is a strategic enabler of the UK’s transition to net zero, delivering green jobs and opening up access to mobility. Making our industry more diverse is crucial to achieving all this, enabling us to attract and retain the best talent and reach out to a broader customer base. We are delighted to support the Women in Transport Equity Index, as it aligns with our commitment to creating a cycling industry that is diverse, equitable, and inclusive for all.”

Kier, a leading construction, infrastructure services and property developments group, stands firmly behind the Women in Transport Equity Index.

Donna Howard, head of social sustainability at Kier Transportation, said:

“We believe that diversity and inclusion are key drivers of success in the transportation industry. Change comes from within and by sponsoring this important initiative, we are contributing to positive change within our sector.”

Mobility Lab, a champion for inclusion and engagement in transportation, joins us in supporting the Women in Transport Equity Index.

“Diversity is essential in ensuring that the future of the transport is a just and sustainable one,” said James Gleave, Director of Mobility Lab.

“It is time that transport practices what it preaches, and the Equity Index is a perfect way of judging how it has come and where it is heading.”

The Women in Transport Equity Index survey is set to ignite positive change within the transport sector, inspiring companies to continually improve and thrive. By publishing the Index annually, awarding badges and providing access to the Knowledge Hub, the initiative aims to create an environment where equity becomes the norm—an outcome of embracing diversity and taking decisive actions.

“We firmly believe that diversity and equity are not just initiatives; they are the driving forces behind a prosperous and inclusive industry,” emphasised Sue Terpilowski, Women in Transport lead for the Index.

“The Women in Transport Equity Index survey represents groundbreaking work in diversity, equity and inclusion. We invite all companies to join us in this momentous endeavour and together, we can set a worldwide precedent for equality in the transport sector.”

Link to register for the Equity Index 2023