FTSE COMPANIES FAIL ETHNIC MINORITIES
only Asian candidate in the race for London Mayor, Ram Gidoomal,
says he will haul-in the heads of top FTSE companies into City Hall
to discuss their failure to promote ethnic minority business figures
onto their boards. The Christian Peoples Alliance Leader is a recent
Chair of a Cabinet Office Better Regulation Taskforce group looking
into anti-discrimination measures in industry.
to Mr Gidoomal, business and commerce have failed to rise to the
challenge of racial inclusion by self-regulation. Political action
is now required. Commenting on the publication today of a government-backed
report into boardroom discrimination by the head of the London Business
School, Laura D'Andrea Tyson, Mr Gidoomal said: "The Tyson
report follows swiftly on the back of the Higgs committee recommendations
and relies on self-regulation and the goodwill of industry. But
lots of good wishes and empty promises have delivered nothing and
will continue to deliver nothing. The fact is that there are just
a handful of black and Asian business figures on the board of the
top 100 FTSE companies. I will act to change that."
Tyson Report calls for an annual census on boardroom diversity,
a more transparent process for recruiting non-executives and new
guidelines on training for directors.
Chairman of the business group, 'Race for Opportunity' in London,
backed by companies such as Lloyds, Boots, British Airways and others,
Mr Gidoomal added: "Government must act and political leaders
in London must act. As London Mayor, I will haul in business leaders
to discuss my ideas for high-level secondments to their firms, raise
the prospect of contract compliance for bidders for public schemes,
company sponsorship of MBA courses for rising achievers and the
introduction of measurable anti-discrimination policies, such as
an end to the use of all-white headhunters. Fund managers for the
big public sector pension funds and ordinary shareholders will also
be commanded into action; if board level pay can be made an issue
at company AGMs, then so can racial discrimination."
business figures in the capital are backing Ram Gidoomal in his
campaign for London, including Tim Melville-Ross, Chairman, Investors
in People and Former Director General, Institute of Directors; John
Whitney, Capital Radio's first Chief Executive and Former Director
General of the Independent Broadcasting Authority; and leading businesswoman
and recent Chair of the RSA, Prue Leith.
Gidoomal is an entrepreneur, and former UK Group Chief Executive
of the Inlaks Group, a multinational business with seven thousand
employees. He and his family were forced to leave wealth and prosperous
business interests behind them when they came to Britain from East
Africa as refugees.
a CBE in 1998 for services to the Asian Business Community and Race
Relations, he is Chairman of Employability Forum, helping refugees
into jobs and a council member of the Institute for Employment Studies
and Chairman of the South Asian Development Partnership.
announced his intention to run for London Mayor ealier this year.