Financial & Legal News

International Women’s Day – Break the Bias

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Today Pearson Solicitors in Oldham celebrates International Women’s Day (IWD) by crossing our arms in solidarity to support this movement which this year focuses on breaking the bias regarding the issue of gender.

What is International Women’s Day?

IWD is a global day which takes place on 8th March each year celebrating social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. By supporting this event, we hope to help break the bias in all aspects of life. Whether it be in our communities, the workplace, schools, colleges, and universities, we can each make a difference by leading by example and by being aware of our own unconscious bias.

Unconscious bias affects everyone and it can be influenced by our background and personal experiences. Many people believe that unconscious bias is just about gender however, it can be triggered by ethnicity or other visible diversity characteristics such as height, body weight, names, and many other things.

What does unconscious bias mean to some?

  • Do we sometimes assume that female bosses are not leaders?
  • Do we believe that a gender pay gap should or should not exist?
  • Do we undervalue women because of their age?
  • Do we hold women back rather than encouraging them so that they can reach their true potential?
  • Do we discard women’s opinions from different ethnic groups and countries?

Leading by example and celebrating the achievement of others

Leading by example really does hold the key when it comes to making change and this is regardless of gender. That said, at Pearson’s, 78% of the workforce are female, many of whom hold senior positions, take Joanne Ormston for example.

Joanne is one of three Senior Partners at Person Solicitors and she is also the Practice Manager for the firm. Joanne has climbed the ladder of success having initially joined the firm as a Legal Cashier in 2002 and she is a Chartered Management Accountant and has a BSc honours degree in Business Management.

Joanne’s role encompasses everything from:

  • Strategic planning and implementation
  • Human resources,
  • Facilities management
  • Compliance
  • Financial management

She is well respected by her peers, staff and the business community and is often asked to speak at events about the changes in the legal landscape.

In addition, Joanne is a former winner of Businesswomen of the Year at the Oldham Business Awards and a keen supporter of apprenticeship schemes which take a lot of input, commitment, and training by the apprentice and indeed Joanne.

Back in February, during National Apprenticeship Week, we featured three ladies in the practice which demonstrates Joanne’s encouragement to those wishing to enhance their careers.

Joanne says “As an equal opportunities employer, we are very much an ‘all-inclusive’ practice, but we recognise many organisations might not be getting this right which in this day and age, is hard to believe but it does happen. Our employment department can certainly testify to this due to the number of clients they help who experience discrimination.

Pearson’s very much respect, develop and invest in all our staff, regardless of gender, religious belief, age, and social background.  It’s about having the right people in the right position and encouraging people to thrive whilst getting the backing and support from their peers and senior management.”

Interesting Fact about an Oldham Leading Lady

Did you know that a bronze statue of former mill worker and suffragette Annie Kenney proudly stands outside the Old Town Hall in Oldham?

Oldham-born Annie is often referred to as ‘Manchester’s most forgotten suffragette’ but was honoured with a long overdue statue. Eventually being unveiled in December 2018 – exactly 100 years after women first exercised their right to vote. The day saw hundreds of people gather in the Oldham town centre to mark this momentous occasion.

Pearson's Oldham Heritage

Our three office are all located in the borough of Oldham namely Oldham, Hollinwood and Failsworth with a fourth on the horizon in Saddleworth which is currently under renovation. We are proud to support the borough by offering professional legal and financial services to the people and businesses in the Greater Manchester area and beyond.

How can we help

If you have ever experienced discrimination in the workplace contact our Employment Law Solicitors on 0161 785 3500 or email

Please note that the information and opinions contained in this article are not intended to be comprehensive, nor to provide legal advice. No responsibility for its accuracy or correctness is assumed by Pearson Solicitors and Financial Advisers Ltd or any of its members or employees. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking, or refraining from taking, any action as a result of this article.

This blog was posted some time ago and its contents may now be out of date. For the latest legal position relating to these issues, get in touch with the author - or make an enquiry now.

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