Nigerian female lawyers are set to benefit from a global Safety in the Workplace Initiative which will be launched at The Wings Towers, Victoria Island, Lagos, on Friday.
The initiative is being put together by The African Women on Board (AWB), a Nigerian-founded global non-profit organisation, dedicated to advancing the cause of African and diaspora women around the world.
It is aimed at reshaping traditional working environments to become places that accommodate growth and encourage women to realise their full potential.
The legal sector, they say, represents both a challenge and an opportunity for change hence the reason it has been selected as the starting point for the initiative.
The organisation says the new programme, tagged, ‘Safety in the (Legal) Workplace’, has been designed to facilitate systems change directly on the ground.
It added that the initiative also serves as a response to Gender-Based Violence to commemorate the 2021 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence with the theme; “End Femicide.”
About the initiative<
Shedding more light on the project, Nkiru Balonwu, founder and co-chair of African Women on Board, said most adults spend most of their working lives at work, but for women in particular, these environments all too often become challenging ones.
She said: “Issues such as bullying, sexual harassment, emotional and financial abuse, and broader inequality have not gone away.
“Our new Safety in the Workplace initiative has been specifically designed to facilitate real systems change from the ground up, reshaping traditional working environments to become places that accommodate growth and encourage women to realise their full potential.”
She also added that the issue of workplace violence against women remains prominent around the world and that it must be tackled in a joined-up way across society.
On her part, Yinka Edu of Udoma Udoma and Bello Osagie (UUBO), commended the timing of the initiative which her organisation is pleased to support.
AWB Chairperson, Chioma Agomo, a professor, added that: “I am quite convinced that we are going in the right direction together with the right partners, using a replicable strategy to create safer workplaces globally – educational institutions, Law firms, professional bodies and the private sector.”
According to the organisers, at the event, a dedicated Gender Equity Certification programme will be unveiled, adding that the idea is to provide assessments, recommendations and training – to help organisations and human resources or employment practitioners to implement safer working environments.
The organisers said they have concluded all arrangements to lead Nigerian public and private organisations to launch global Safety in the Workplace Initiative.
“It is being staged in partnership with the Faculty of Law of the University of Lagos (UNILAG), Association of Company Secretaries and Legal Advisers (ACSLA), and leading, Law firms and private sector organisations. Some of the Speakers include the UNILAG deputy vice-chancellor for development service, Ayo Atsenuwa, US Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Beth Leonard. chairman, MTN Nigeria, and chairman, National Economic Summit Group (NESG), amongst others,” the added
According to the organisers, some keynotes and panel discussions will include: Gender Equity and the Future of Work, Laying the Foundation: Educational Institutions and Safety in the World of Work.
Other topics are Safety in Educational Institutions: Taking the Lead, Learnings from the Faculty of Law UniLag, Safety in the (Legal) Workplace: A View from Ghana and Safety in the [Legal] Workplace: Learnings from the IBA.
Safety in the (Legal) Workplace: The Role of Educational Institutions & Professional Bodies in Laying the Foundation” and “Reimagining Work: Young Lawyers as Catalysts for Change/Change Agents”.