HR Roundtable: Sexual Harassment in the Workplace
Following the Weinstein scandal, there has been an increased spotlight on all organisations about what sorts of behaviours are unacceptable and would be considered sexual harassment.
Acas is committed to working with employers and employees on all aspects of sexual harassment in the workplace. During this session, Julie Dennis will set out the kind of actions organisations should be taking.
Roundtable participants will also have the opportunity to hear from Jennifer Smith, Head of Inclusion at the British Film Institute. Jennifer has been leading on work across the British Film and Screen industry in the wake of Weinstein. This has led to the publication of a set of principles to tackle bullying and harassment in the screen industries.
These are designed to foster responsibility for creating and maintaining an inclusive workplace, providing adequate protection for complainants & victims, and a respect for each other’s dignity, regardless of seniority. Jennifer will also elaborate on some of the interventions BFI have developed.
This will be your opportunity to meet other individuals across the sectors who are developing inclusive workplaces. You will get insight into policies and cultures which will help address sexual harassment. It will give you an understanding of the potential challenges and opportunities that this represents.
About the speakers:
As Head of Inclusion at the BFI, Jennifer Smith is responsible for leading on diversity and inclusion across all BFI activity – identified in the BFI2022 five year strategy. This includes continuing the work of the BFI Diversity Standards as well as building and implementing new partnerships and programmes, working across the BFI’s leadership, workforce, public programmes, policy areas and funding streams. Jennifer also drove the creation and publication of the screen sectors first Set of Principles and Guidance to tackle bullying and harassment, developing them in partnership with BAFTA and in consultation with key organisations across the film, television and games industries.
Previously Jennifer led on inclusion at Circle Housing and drove transformational change whilst there, in just three years pushing Circle Housing from 244th to 22nd place in Stonewall’s Workplace Equality Index and at the same time into Race for Opportunity’s top 10 BAME employers within the public sector.
Julie Dennis is a Diversity and Inclusion specialist with over 17 years’ experience, gained within the public and voluntary sector. She is currently leading on Diversity & Inclusion, HR Policy and Employee Health & Wellbeing at Acas.
She has successfully developed and delivered strategic diversity and inclusion initiatives relating to employment and service delivery, and is one of the country’s most experienced professionals in this field.
Graduating from Sheffield Hallam University in 1998 with a BA (Hon’s) in Women’s Studies, Julie has a passion for diversity and inclusion. Her first diversity role was with Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service where she implemented the services first Diversity Strategy along with an extensive training programme on harassment & bullying.
Prior to joining Acas, she was Head of Diversity at the Land Registry, where her work on Diversity & Inclusion was recognised repeatedly winning the department awards in 2012, 2013, 2015 and 2016. In addition she successfully ensuring HMLR maintained its Stonewall Top 100 Employers Index position in 2016 & 2017.
She is a Stonewall workplace ally and is a champion for mental health awareness.
Creating an environment where everyone can bring their whole selves to work, is a driving force behind her work.