A report in UK publication, The Guardian, today (Monday) claims UK Gambling Commission chief executive Sarah Harrison will send out a call to the gambling industry and organisers of arguably the biggest global gambling industry exhibition ‘ICE Totally Gaming’ ahead of its public opening on Wednesday to stamp out sexism and stereotyping.
Harrison will reportedly warn that the UKGC will consider boycotting the event should attitudes go unchanged amid swirling global debate on women being objectified at hospitality events.
The chief executive has allegedly taken umbrage at companies who use “scantily clad” women to host stands, saying the practice is a “significant stain on the industry’s reputation”.
“This is an industry where we have a number of talented, powerful and successful women,” Harrison will reportedly tell the International Casino Conference, Monday.
Harrison will refer to ICE 2017, saying: “Yet from walking around the exhibition you wouldn’t know this. Instead you saw men representing their companies wearing expensive tailored suits whilst their female colleagues were expected to wear nothing more than swimsuits. I say bring this to an end now.”
Organisers Clarion Gaming, in response to a global move on ending stereotyping and predatory practices across all industries, encouraged “all exhibitors to represent support staff promoting their products at the show in a non-offensive and non-stereotyping way.”
“For both organisations, it is clear that presenting a modern and diverse gaming industry should be at the heart of the show. For this to be successful and ensure that all participants feel equally welcome, the respectful representation of genders is crucial,” an open letter from the European Casino Association (ECA) and Clarion Gaming said.
“It is imperative that our industry presents its positive image … Our industry is modern and inclusive, and we call on exhibitors to showcase the great products and services they offer in a respectful manner that does not rely on outdated stereotype,” ECA chairman Per Jaldung, added.
According to The Guardian, Harrison’s speech will highlight Bet365’s Denise Coates who holds the distinction of being the UK’s highest paid chief executive.