Still not enough women in top jobs, equal ops body warns
Women are still seriously underrepresented in high-ranking jobs in the UK, the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) has warned.
Although the situation has improved in some areas, improvements have been "painfully slow" and, in some cases, prospects for women have worsened, a survey revealed.
Just ten per cent of directors in FTSE 100 firms are women and females account for less than a fifth of those in parliament.
EOC chair Jenny Watson commented: "Thirty years on from the Sex Discrimination Act, women rightly expect to share power. But as our survey shows, that's not the reality."
For women from ethnic minority backgrounds, the situation is particularly grave. They account for just 0.4 per cent of FTSE 100 directors, despite representing 3.9 per cent of the labour market, and just 0.3 per cent of parliament.
"Our democracy and local communities will be stronger if women from different backgrounds are able to enjoy an equal voice," Ms Watson added.
However, the CBI said that there were positive signs for the future and that the number of women from younger age groups becoming directors was encouraging.
"Twenty-eight per cent of directors aged 18 to 29 are women," said Susan Anderson, CBI director of human resources, adding: "This bodes well for the future."