The word charter stands for a long-term commitment to individually and collectively work with a specific question. This statement comes from Charter 77: free, informal and open association of people united by the will to work individually and jointly for respect for human and civil rights in our country and worldwide. The charter’s work is characterized by a long-term perspective and sustainability. It is this deliberately sustainable way of working that has brought us to where we are today.
The Diversity Charter was founded in 2004 in Paris by a group of companies who together intended to create better conditions for integration in their own businesses, while at the same time working with a broader social perspective. By offering young people with different ethnic backgrounds contacts and education within the companies, the skills of young people were utilized in a new way. The work was quickly developed to focus on the diversity strategies of the participating companies. A large part of the French labor market began to show interest in the Diversity Charter, which received increasing attention and spread to Spain, Germany, Belgium and Italy.
Today, the French charter represents 25 percent of the French workforce and the Diversity Charter is now a European platform with the purpose of creating opportunities for sharing experience and the development of diversity and inclusion in working life. The project has spread to 20 countries, leading to diversity work affecting millions of employees.
Once a year, a conference is organized at EU level for Diversity Charter’s member charters. The event consists of lecturers, panels and social events and takes place in one of the member countries.
The EU Commission recognizes the contribution of Diversity Charter to combating discrimination. They support the work by financing meetings, so-called Exchange Platforms, for exchanging experience about inclusion in working life from a European perspective.
The Swedish Charter was founded in 2010 by Axfood, A-search, Lectia, Managing Diversity, L´Oreal, Novartis, Sodexo, Scandic, Skanska and Volvo. As members we aim to contribute a Nordic perspective on diversity and take part in developing the organization’s member network.