Why should business care about social justice?

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Topics Inclusion

The 20th February is the United Nations' (UN) World Day of Social Justice.

The topic in 2018 is Workers on the Move, and explores how most migration today is linked directly or indirectly to the search for decent work opportunities.

Panning out beyond the immediate theme, the UN website defines social justice as: “The underlying principle for peaceful and prosperous coexistence.” It adds: “We uphold the principles of social justice when we promote gender equality or the rights of indigenous peoples and migrants. We advance social justice when we remove barriers that people face because of gender, age, race, ethnicity, religion, culture or disability.”

Though social justice is often seen (thanks to its name) as a social issue, there’s a lot there for business to be concerned with.

"Prosperous coexistence" ...? Show us a C-suite that doesn't want that. 

Not to mention tackling, “barriers that people face because of gender, age, race, ethnicity, religion, culture or disability.”

These issues are the concerns of HR departments around our region; PwC’s Diversity and Inclusion Benchmark Survey reveals 89 per cent of APAC organisations state D&I as a value or priority.

And as the DCA-Suncorp Inclusion@Work Index – a nationally representative survey of 3,000 people which measured the impact and extent of inclusion in modern Australian workplaces – showed, there’s a reason why that’s the case.

Facilitating equity and creating an environment where diverse groups of people work effectively together boosts performance and gives organisations a competitive edge.

Findings from the Inclusion@Work Index showed inclusive teams are:

  • 10 times more likely to be highly effective (58 per cent compared to 6 per cent in non-inclusive teams)
  • 9 times more likely to innovate (45 per cent to 5 per cent)
  • 4 times more likely to stay with their employer over the coming year (62 per cent to 16 per cent)

This is a mighty powerful business case for something that’s perceived to be simply a social or moral obligation. So on the 20th, mark the day by:

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