Representatives across the fintech community have launched the Fintech For All Charter – an industry-led initiative aiming to end harassment and promote diversity within the sector.
The charter, which is a commitment to increase diversity and inclusion, is being led by InChorus and supported by Innovate Finance, the FinTech Alliance, and Level39, with the City regulator supporting the steering committee.
Signatories will pledge to create a culture where inclusive behaviour is championed, harassment is not tolerated, and diversity is widely promoted.
Initial signatories of the charter include: Zopa backer Augmentum VC, Currencycloud, Checkout.com, Delio Wealth, Funding Xchange, Applied Blockchain, Erlang Solution, Plenitude, Landbay, Outward VC, Anthemis and Consultancy PwC as well as industry bodies Fintech Circle and UK Business Angels Association.
The call for action follows a sector survey conducted by InChorus, which revealed that 85 per cent of harassment related incidents were related to gender and 84 per cent of victims were harassed more than once.
Out of the firms and employees surveyed, 78 per cent of victims said they did not officially report the incident. Reasons for not reporting included the victim not being sure if the incident was serious enough to address (15 per cent) or if action would be taken (12 per cent).
Nearly two-thirds (63 per cent) wanted their company to implement training to prevent harassment, whilst over half (51 per cent) said that a set of employment standards for fintechs would help effectively tackle workplace harassment.
“InChorus are proud to spearhead the Fintech For All movement,” said Raj Ramanandi, co-chief executive of InChorus.
“At the start of the year, we surveyed an array of employees working within the fintech sector, to better understand the challenges around harassment and exclusion employees within our industry are facing.
“As a result of the insights we uncovered, we believe the launch of the Fintech For All Charter is the much-needed driving force to foster a far more inclusive and diverse sector moving forwards.
“We hope that fintech companies across the UK consider joining us on our journey to change fintech for the better, creating a safe and happy environment to futureproof our innovative and growing sector.”
“Fintech is the crown jewel of UK tech and we need to ensure that diversity and inclusion are an integral part of the sector’s culture from the start,” said Charlotte Crosswell, chief executive of Innovate Finance.
“We are delighted to support the Fintech For All Charter and would encourage all fintech organisations to sign up in order to create an environment which normalises inclusion and eradicates harassment.
“It is positive to see the wide array of signatories participating to date, and it’s important they take the pledge they have made seriously, and put all the suggested steps into practice in order to catalyse the much-needed change our sector needs to sustain long-term growth.”