Last week, M Group Services' Rail & Aviation Division's ENABLE Network, a part of M Group Services’ Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) Group, hosted EDI webinars in celebration of National Inclusion Week.

Showcasing the importance of staff networks within the business, the webinars, which were open for people across M Group Services to attend, gave people the opportunity to gain a wider understanding of a range of topics, starting with the introductory session ‘Let’s Look Back’, held by the EDI Group’s executive sponsor, Kirstie Jones. This webinar launched National Inclusion Week 2023 and looked back at the work the EDI Group has done so far.

A collaborative event, the webinars included several guest speakers from across M Group Services’ operating businesses. On Monday, Mo Kamara, Rail & Aviation Ethnicity & Culture Network Lead, hosted a webinar alongside Ben Harrison, from Morrison Water Services’ REACH Network, focused on ‘Understanding Ethnicity and Culture.’ Discussions included the misconception of the terms ‘ethnicity and culture’, the Water Division's work with its REACH Network, and the plans for the rest of 2023 to raise awareness.

Tuesday’s webinar on ‘Neurodiversity & Disability Throughout the Years’ was hosted by Beth Wells, the Network’s Neurodiversity & Disability Lead. The session took us through how disability has been viewed throughout Western history. From the social and medical models of disability to medieval practices, this webinar was an interesting and thought-provoking look into how our approach to disability and neurodiversity has evolved over the years.

On Wednesday, Kate Hofstetter, co-chair of the Morrison Water Services’ Women’s Network, joined Charlotte Orsmond, co-chair of the EDI Group and Ageism & Lived Experience Network Lead, in a discussion on ‘Menopause Awareness & Breaking the Gender Bias.’ Guests received useful information on how we can support colleagues going through menopause, the struggles people face at work when going through this life stage, and what resources are available.

On Thursday, the Rail & Aviation EDI Group’s Co-Chair, Hiro Ng, hosted an ‘LGBTQ+ Providing a Safe Space Inside Out’ webinar discussing the importance of parents, carers, and families supporting their LGBTQ+ children and having a support network for themselves, with guest speaker Rebecca Barton from Milestone’s Pride Network.

The Network’s webinar series ended with a focus on ‘Making an Inclusive Culture a Reality’ with engagement from the participants throughout the week to find out what they would like to see more of and understand how they can make a difference.

Speaking on the importance of the National Inclusion Week webinars, Kirstie Jones, HR Director for the Rail & Aviation Division, said: “What a wonderful week of celebration and learning. It’s inspiring to see a commitment to inclusivity and making a positive difference. If you have any specific questions or need assistance related to any topics discussed, feel free to ask.”

Across M Group Services, we understand the value and benefits a diverse workforce brings and that building a truly inclusive environment empowers broader diversity across the business. We work to support our colleagues, during National Inclusion Week and beyond.