Breaking the bias: Chamber hosts lunch for International Women's Day

St Albans Chamber of Commerce vice president Cheryl Luzet.

St Albans Chamber of Commerce vice president Cheryl Luzet. - Credit: Rebecca Fennell Photography.

Over a hundred people from the local business community gathered at St Michael’s Manor to celebrate International Women’s Day at a lunch hosted by the St Albans District Chamber of Commerce.

The event featured a speech from Dr Natalie Shenker who co-founded the Human Milk Foundation charity in 2018 with the aim of providing equitable access to donor human milk and breastfeeding support services and initiating vital research in this area. The Chamber was able to donate over £1,000 to the charity thanks to the generosity of the attendees.

Emma Ellis, Amber Mountain Marketing

Emma Ellis, Amber Mountain Marketing - Credit: Rebecca Fennell Photography.

President Pat Strods said: “I’m delighted we were able to hold this event again after a two-year absence. The sun shone, the food was delicious, and the speeches were inspirational which resulted in lots of lively discussions amongst those who attended. It was great to come together to look at a broad range of issues affecting women in the workplace.”

Marilyn Bell, SA Law

Marilyn Bell, SA Law - Credit: Rebecca Fennell Photography

The campaign theme for this year’s International Women’s Day was ‘Break the bias’, and June Cory of My Mustard facilitated discussions on a variety of topics including whether people should actively call out gender bias when they see it as well as the experience of working mothers during lockdown, hybrid working and the global gender gap.

Kate Fitzgerald and June Cory, My Mustard

Kate Fitzgerald and June Cory, My Mustard - Credit: Rebecca Fennell Photography

Amy Green, one of the attendees, remarked: “Thank you to the Chamber for the opportunity for open and honest discussion surrounding unconscious bias and what we can do to play our part.”

Chamber events manager Anna Venetico said: “The Chamber would like to thank everybody who attended and the sponsors, My Mustard, Rayden Solicitors, Rayner Essex, SA Law and Visible Impact whose support have made this event possible.”

Dr Natalie Shenker, co-founder of the Human Milk Foundation

Dr Natalie Shenker, co-founder of the Human Milk Foundation - Credit: Rebecca Fennell Photography

Victoria Thomas from SA Law added: “What a way to spend the day! Thanks for giving us all a long-awaited opportunity to reconnect and discuss the key issues affecting women in the workplace. Can’t wait for next year!”