Diversity Data: why members should update their membership details

The disproportionate impacts on certain groups caused by the pandemic and the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement has strengthened a focus on diversity and equality.

Building an inclusive and diverse union has never been more important.

The CWU believe everyone should have a right to equal access to employment, training and development, the right to be free of any direct or indirect discrimination and harassment or bullying and the right to be valued and respected.

Our membership and representative data is a crucial component in making more informed decisions. The more – and better-quality – membership data we collect, the better we can design and target activity to address inequality and evaluate progress.

In 2019 the CWU committed to collecting annual data on the diversity of the membership and have made it a priority to produce proportionality reports every year.

What are the benefits of collecting diversity data?

  • Valuing everyone – Social democracy lays at the heart of the CWU values and principles. Collecting diversity data from our members helps us to identify a range of people allowing for a cross section of views and experiences.
  • Looking at ourselves – Knowing what we look like and the make-up of our membership allows us to work towards achieving an active union of representatives that reflects our membership so that interests and needs are understood and addressed.
  • Identifies barriers – Collecting, monitoring and analysing diversity data allows the CWU to know whether certain groups experience barriers because of policies and practices that have been developed with the majority in mind. By identifying barriers the CWU are able to develop and implement positive action and change for under-represented groups.
  • Allows us to celebrate diversity – Research informs us that bringing together a wide range of people with different backgrounds, characteristics and experiences is beneficial for innovation and improvement. Diversity must be recorded, recognised and celebrated.
  • Develop better strategies and policies – Analysing the make-up of our union allows us to explore and develop strategies that target resources to close gaps and tackle inequality. For example, by using the data we hold on diversity we are able to identify health inequality by identifying members with or without a disability. We are then able to go further and include gender, ethnicity and age to identify if certain groups are disproportionality disadvantaged more than others. Using this information can also help the union negotiate and deliver better collective bargaining agreements and workplace policies.
  • Target campaigns and communications – using personal contact data we hold on our membership recording systems and identifying certain groups of members allows us to target correspondence and engage better with members from under-represented groups.

What are the benefits for members?

  • Enhanced Voice – Improves membership’s voice and capacity to express and exercise views and interests which has the potential to influence CWU policies and priorities – especially of those who have been previously marginalised on the basis of gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, ability, geography, or other identities.
  • Enhanced Opportunities – knowing where members are will provide more opportunities for members to participate in union activities, education and training, allowing members to develop themselves and become leaders.
  • Better Communication and Engagement – Targeted communications means members can keep up to date with issues that interest and affect them and engage with the CWU better.
  • More Inclusive Policies – members could benefit from more inclusive strategies that support diversity and inclusion in the workplace and enhance workplace policies, for example.
  • Time off work for religious holidays
  • Paid time off for childcare
  • Offering on-site day-care
  • Free sanitary products for women
  • Inclusive facilities, such as the availability of non-gendered restrooms
  • Extending options for flexible work hours
  • Using technologies with a translation feature so every employee can communicate irrespective of their ability etc.

How members can update their details?

There are many different ways members can share information with us. Below are the 3 most common methods for members to update their details:

  1. CWU Website – CWU members can update their details via the member’s area of the CWU website. Follow our 6 step guide here. It only takes a few minutes.
  2. CWU Affiliate App Download the CWU Affiliate App and update your details at a click of a button. Simply click on the “account” tab displayed at the bottom of the screen and then click on the settings icon at the top right hand of the screen and members will be taken to a list of options that will allow them to view and update their membership details. It’s as simple as that!
  3. Contact the branch – Simply contact your branch secretary or speak to your local rep and ask if you can update your membership details.