Case Study: National rep Janice Adam (Devon and Cornwall)
Janice Adam blazed a trail for women when she was elected the first female member of Devon and Cornwall Federation’s executive board. A decade on, she is keen to encourage more people to become Fed Reps. Could you do it?
Janice says: “I joined the Federation initially as a workplace representative. The demographic was mainly older men and it could be difficult to get your voice heard. Nobody was overtly sexist but they could be condescending and I had to work at acceptance. I was younger and bringing different ideas and I was a woman.”
She spoke to colleagues individually and got them on side. Later she was appointed Vice Chairman of her Joint Branch Board (JBB) and Chair of her Inspectors Branch Board. She is also a full time equalities liaise.
Janice wants to people from all backgrounds becoming Fed Reps because of her view that “diversity provides different perspectives”.
She says: “People can be put off becoming Fed Reps due to workloads or if they are women, seeing middle aged white males as reps, they will ask themselves ‘would I fit in?’. My advice is to put yourself forward.
“You will get out as much out as you put in. For me it’s a feeling of having done a really good job, helping others and doing the right thing – you really get that in spades with the Federation. You’ll deal with senior officers and upskill yourself because you are working at a higher level.”
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