EDGE Certified Foundation has published a DE&I legislative overview of the top 20 countries by current EDGE Certifications. The EquiNations overview shows that the vast majority of the 20 researched countries have implemented legislation to safeguard against discrimination in employment based on gender, race/ethnicity, nationality, LGBTQ+ identity, age, or working with a disability.

Furthermore, certain jurisdictions have progressed beyond the legislative recognition of the importance of eradicating all kinds of discrimination in the workplace, and have taken a proactive approach by implementing, for example, hiring quotas for people with disabilities and workplace accessibility requirements, by setting paid maternity and paternity leave above the recommended level of the International Labor Organization (ILO), or by mandating recurrent pay gap reporting, aiming to manage and eventually close the gender pay gap.

Key findings from the EquiNations research include:

• The majority of countries examined have implemented hiring quotas for individuals with disabilities, with exceptions including the US, UK, Switzerland, Canada, Mexico, and Australia.
• Most countries analysed have legislation against LGBTQ+ employment discrimination already in place.
• Less than half of the countries have implemented legislation to ensure gender quotas on company boards.
• Switzerland has the highest percentage of women in the paid workforce, with a rate of 62.4%, while India has the lowest rate at 24%.
• Germany has the highest employment rate for individuals aged 55-64, standing at 73.69%. Whereas, Romania has the lowest rate at 48.4%.

By documenting what regulations are presently in place and where more can be done, the EquiNations overview aims to inspire employers to move beyond compliance with local regulation and to proactively embrace diversity, equity, and inclusion as an essential element of their organizational strategy.

The EDGE Certified organizations within these nations are setting important benchmarks within their national contexts, by committing to measure where they are in their DE&I journey and to progress on their path to workplace gender and intersectional equity. Such organizations can serve to inspire other employers within their jurisdictions to follow suit by adopting best practices, by engaging with their employees and stakeholders, and by seeking out the diverse perspectives and experiences that are indispensable for achieving true inclusivity.

Aniela Unguresan, Founder of EDGE Certified Foundation, said “Organizations looking to adopt DE&I policies and practices for their workplaces need to understand how local legislation and regulation impacts workplaces, and where there may be areas to go beyond regulation to support long-term sustainable value creation in the DE&I area.”

“We can see that all the countries in the top 20 list by number of current EDGE Certifications have made great progress in promoting DE&I nationally, by enacting certain anti-discrimination laws and labour protections, by entrenching equal pay between men and women in the national legislation, and by providing legal protection from sexual harassment at work.”

“These regulations will have a direct impact on helping employers create truly inclusive workplaces. However, where the legislation is yet to catch up with the real needs of their countries’ workforces, the benefit of EDGE Certification is to provide a clear and holistic standard for workplace gender and intersectional equity, offering employers the opportunity to go beyond regulation, in order to drive DE&I progress and improve organizational performance.”

For the full review of the 20 EDGE Certifying countries and their DE&I laws and legislations please visit https://www.edge-cert.org/article/equinations-how-do-dei-regulations-differ-across-countries/

For actionable DE&I insights, reports and thought leadership, please visit EDGE Empower, a comprehensive, software-based DE&I solution that will guide you through your journey and support you to become eligible for EDGE Certification.