Policies & Documents

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

The WI was founded on democratic ideals over 100 years ago and this commitment to equality is still central to our ethos today. The WI is an inclusive, supportive and progressive organisation for all women with a diverse membership of around 180,000 members.

The WI is open to all women. It welcomes and celebrates a diverse cross-section of women, offering a space where they can be themselves surrounded by other supportive women.

We do not ask members any personal questions as part of the joining process and are committed to ensuring all members are treated fairly and equally whatever their background or individual circumstances, with equal access to all opportunities on a national and local level.

What is equality?

Equality is the state of being equal, especially in status, rights and opportunity. Practically, this means ensuring all women have an equal opportunity to join the WI and participate as a member.

What is diversity?

Diversity is understanding that each woman is unique and recognising our individual differences. For the WI, this means celebrating the diversity of our members, recognising differences and embracing these differences to inspire, educate, campaign and fundraise.

What is inclusion?

Inclusion is a basic right and its objective should be to embrace everyone regardless of individual differences. For the WI, this means creating a welcoming and friendly environment where every member is included.

Transgender members

Transgender women are welcome to join the WI and to participate in any WI activities in the same way as any other woman. The WI provides women with educational opportunities and the platform to campaign on issues that matter to them and their communities whilst always celebrating what it means to be a woman. Therefore, welcoming transgender women to the WI builds on our ambitions and enriches our membership to ensure we are a place for all women to celebrate who they are and influence positive change in their communities.

NFWI Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Policy


As the UK’s largest women’s membership organisation, we are a trusted place for all women. Our members shape our organisation and their safety and wellbeing remain at the heart of what we do. We therefore must ensure our Beneficiaries and Representatives feel safe, respected, and protected within our organisational structure, and are able to report concerns.

Our Trustees recognise and acknowledge their role in proactively safeguarding and promoting the welfare of our charities’ Beneficiaries and Representatives. They will seek to ensure that reasonable steps are taken so that, as a result of engaging with the WI, they do not come to harm. Our Trustees will promote a fair, open and positive culture to ensure concerns are reported, heard, and addressed.

We understand that safeguarding can be a sensitive and complicated issue, and we will provide support in accordance with the terms of this policy.

NFWI Safeguarding Policy

Ethical Standards

This policy sets out the ethical standards which the NFWI adheres to when carrying out its charitable objects. This policy will apply to all staff and trustees when carrying out their duties for members, and will underpin the procurement process and/or formal discussions with external partners and suppliers.

Throughout this policy the historical and current campaigns the NFWI has run will be referenced. These campaigns actively demonstrate the NFWI’s ethical ethos and can be accessed for more specific information on that topic.

NFWI Ethical Policy

Code of Conduct

The WI is an organisation centred on friendship, campaigning, education and fun.

We are a place for all women where members are welcomed, supported and able to fully enjoy their membership and utilise all of the opportunities that comes with it. To ensure the aims of the organisation are realised, members must abide by this Code of Conduct which sets out the behaviour expected of WI members.

The NFWI has a zero-tolerance policy of discrimination of any type, including racism, homophobia and transphobia, and of any behaviour that intends to cause distress to another. Any such behaviour must be reported and will be investigated.

NFWI Code of Conduct

Social Media

While the NFWI encourages the use of social media, we have certain standards, outlined in this policy, which NFWI requires everyone to observe. Publication and commentary on social media on behalf of (or in conjunction with) NFWI, a federation or WI, carries similar obligations to any other kind of publication or commentary in the public domain. Even when using your own personal social media, the difference between a personal and professional opinion can be blurred, particularly if you are discussing issues relating to The WI, so this policy also sets out standards for personal social media use.

NFWI Social Media Policy and Code of Conduct