Category Archives: Church of England women bishops

The Stained Glass Ceiling – What About Diversity?

The Church of England  has just voted against women bishops and it will be another five years before a vote can take place again. 

Equal opportunities legislation has ruled in the UK for over forty years, but apparently the internal workings of the Church of England remains untouched by this.  However the government has said it will not step in and apply equalities legislation which allows it to disbar women from the episcopate.  If the immunity was removed women could sue the Church of England for discrimination. At the moment there is no intention do so.  As it is the Church now appears out of date and out of touch.

The debate has been going on for decades. One of the major sticking points is that women bishops will require to be obeyed not just tolerated and that is seems is too much for those who just can not accept that.  Apparently the draft legislation did not provide fairness to those who do not wish to see women bishops.  Women priests were introduced twenty years ago but today the talk is of the stained glass ceiling. 
To a certain extent the decision to not allow women to climb the career ladder within the Church is reflected in the European business community where the situation with women at the top is pretty dire.  Therefore the EU has plans to allow 40% of the top jobs to be given to women. Currently men dominate company boards and board chairs are 96.8% men.  However, it will take a long time to achieve such progress within the Church of England. 

For all organisations to benefit from diversity women have to be allowed to achieve their potential in all walks of life.