Diversity, inclusion and Welfare

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Inclusion, protection of diversity (gender, age, disability, religion, race, etc.), combating sexual harassment and mobbing are issues that are monitored at the governance level. Indeed, Acea has a Code of Ethics and an active Ethics and Sustainability Commit- tee, which, among other things, has the responsibility of assisting the Board of Directors in matters of diversity, with the task of pro- moting the culture of valuing diversity and combating all forms of discrimination.

Acea is one the signatories of the “Utilitalia Pact – Diversity makes the Difference, drafted by the Commission for the Management and Promotion of Utilitalia’s Diversity, and has adopted a Group procedure on the “Protection, inclusion, promotion of the diversity and well-being of workers” and, in 2020, signed the CEO Guide to Human Rights by the World Business Council for Sustainable De- velopment (WBCSD).

In 2021, the company was particularly committed to promoting the principles of including people and valuing diversity, as well as preventing and combating all forms of discrimination. To this end, two important initiatives were implemented:

  • the signing, with the social partners, of the Protocol on Diversity & Inclusion, operational at Group level, to enhance diversity and combat all forms of discrimination in the The Proto- col proposes to implement concrete measures, improving exist- ing legal provisions, to foster parenthood (e.g. leave of up to 12 days as compulsory leave for fathers), support women who are victims of gender-based violence (e.g. provision of an additional period of paid leave of 90 days), counteract any gender gaps and foster the inclusion of the disabled (see also Industrial Relations);
  • the definition of the Diversity & Inclusion Plan for 2021-2022, aimed at defining a programme of initiatives addressed inter- nally, with actions dedicated to employees, and externally for the development of projects on the subject of D&I, in synergy with other corporate Functions, with an impact on customers, the territory and institutions (see in-depth box).


In 2021 Acea developed the 2021-2022 Diversity & Inclusion plan. To this end, employees participated in a survey to collect data on the level of knowledge of the topic, assist the company in under- taking initiatives in line with the real needs of employees, facilitate the dissemination of a culture oriented towards valuing diversity & the inclusion of people.

Based on the survey results, initiatives were defined and imple- mented during the year in the areas of training, communication, monitoring and support, including:

  • the development of a section of the dashboard dedicated to D&I, with the definition of specific indicators for measuring and analysing trends relating to variables of interest (gender, age, disability, etc.) across all processes of the employee journey, from entry into the company to exit;
  • the Corporate Family Responsibility programme, which includ- ed 4 webinars aimed at all Group employees, to provide support on issues related to parenting, how to take care of loved ones, the use of social networks and how the relationship between adults and adolescents is evolving. In particular, the “Tienilo Ac- ceso” [keep it going] webinar, conducted as part of the broad- er event dedicated to inclusion and diversity promoted by TIM called 4week4inclusion, featured sharing and testimony on how diversity, if recognised and valued, can become a strategic factor for people and for the company;
  • the creation of the Equality & Care intranet section, which in- cludes an area dedicated to Diversity & Inclusion, was designed to disseminate the D&I culture, make thematic documents ac- cessible to employees in a structured repository, and dissemi- nate information and communications on initiatives and commitments undertaken by the company on the subject;
  • the project Together for gender equality with the aim of raising awareness on gender equality and combating violence against women, with webinars, short video tutorials and the activation of a support service;
  • participation in the DNA Inclusive Job Day, a career day ded- icated to high-school and university graduates belonging to protected categories, during which Acea interviewed over 20 The event aimed to promote the leveraging of differ- ences and the dissemination of inclusive business and organi- sational models. It consisted of three parts: a training workshop to acquire and share good organisational practices in the area of diversity, presentations by participating companies of their inclusion policies, and a space dedicated to direct interviews between participating companies and candidates. Following the interviews, one candidate was selected and started her career at Acea;
  • the development of the new 'job advertisements' editing, with the definition of new layouts of job descriptions published exter- nally with a specific announcement: «Acea promotes the inclusion and enhancement of the individuality of each person involved in its selection processes by combating any form of discrimination.»;
  • training of staff on the concept of unconscious bias to provide useful tools for promoting the value of diversity in the company and encouraging inclusive management of working The project, which started in December, involved 5,190 people, who were made aware of cognitive biases and widespread prejudices, their impact on organisations and the possible resistance that hinders the establishment of an inclusive culture.

Acea adopts reconciliation measures to support parenting, strengthened thanks to the Diversity & Inclusion Protocol mentioned above, such as parental leave for family reasons for working mothers or working fathers, paternity leave, with the addition of two extra days of paid leave, to be taken within two months of the birth, adoption or fostering of a child; the hourly permits for the enrolment of children at nursery school, kindergarten and the first day of primary school.

In 2021, the company once again participated in the Sistema Scuola Impresa [Business School System”] project, coordinated by the Elis consortium, helping to create the “Inspirational Talks Role Model” initiative: a programme for the promotion of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) training programmes among female middle and secondary school students. This year's project involved 15 female Acea Group professionals who, as role models, recounted their experiences of professional success in male-dominated sectors and sent a message of encouragement to the young- er generation about the possibility of realising their professional dreams. Acea also participated in the Nastro Rosa 2021 campaign on the importance of breast cancer prevention and the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. (see the chapter Customers, Communication, events and solidarity).

Acea participated in the Bloomberg Gender Equality Index (GEI) again in 2021. This index measures gender equality in terms of five areas: female leadership and talent pipeline, wage parity and equal- ity between the sexes, inclusive culture, sexual harassment policies and promotion activities aimed at women. The assessment is positive and equal to 80.67 (on a scale of 0-100), a clear improvement on the 2020 assessment (70.49) and above the averages for the sector (71.21) and the sample analysed (71.11) (see also chapter Shareholders and Investors).

Acea actively promotes corporate well-being, starting with the needs of its staff, which are determined over time through surveys. The Group Welfare Plan was enhanced in 2021, identifying six fundamental pillars relating to health, work-life balance, emotional and physical wellbeing, supplementary pensions, income support measures and family.

The income support measures include the option to convert the performance bonus into welfare services (flexible benefits) through the My Welfare platform, enriched with a wider range of personal and family services (family services, travel, transport, health and health insurance, supplementary pensions, sport and leisure, etc.). To promote the Welfare Plan, in 2021 numerous information meet- ings were held remotely and a variety of training videos were shared. Acea has reused part of the tax relief, enjoyed thanks to the Wel- fare Plan, for the benefit of all employees through the payment of an additional amount for those who allocate their performance bonus to supplementary pension schemes, complementary social security and by offering preventive health services and campaigns promoting primary and secondary prevention and healthy lifestyles as well as making an economic contribution the provision of services for the psycho-physical well-being and physical well-being of employees and their families.

Among the numerous welfare initiatives undertaken during the year, Acea:

  • organised the "Previeni con Acea" [prevent with Acea] cam- paign, to raise awareness of the importance of health, prevention and the adoption of healthy lifestyles among To this end, in collaboration with the Fondazione Policlinico Universi- tario Agostino Gemelli IRCCS and the Bambin Gesù Children's Hospital, two webinars have been organised on: “Covid-19 and the lungs: a lesson for the future”, “The role of the microbiota in the digestive system” and “The Sars-CoV-2 Pandemic in Italy”; a three day event was organised in collaboration with Susan G. Komen Italia, during which 342 breast, dermatological and endocrino- logical screenings were carried out free of charge, with around 600 requests received, and employees were offered free car- diological, urological and gynaecological check-ups and clinical tests, as well as the possibility of using the telemedicine service in collaboration with the CRA;
  • deployed the "Sostegno Donna" (Support for Women) to offer a direct channel of assistance to those who need to talk to select- ed professionals, also offering the possibility of undertaking spe- cific counselling, psychological, psychotherapeutic, pedagogical and parenting support courses;
  • developed "Mi prendo cura di te” [I take care of you], a caregiver service, totally free of charge, aimed at providing personalised advice and guidance with a professional (the care manager) in the management of educational and/or social care needs (sup- port services for the elderly and people with disabilities, services to support children, specialised services with the availability of psychologists, nurses, physiotherapists, etc.);
  • Rolled out the wellness programme 'Acea and Fitprime: togeth- er for wellbeing', aimed at promoting physical and nutritional wellbeing and encouraging the adoption of a healthy lifestyle by practising sport, taking part in live streaming and on-demand courses on the Fitprime platform and customising one's diet plan with a nutritionist;
  • the "Wellness Fridays" programme was launched on World Food Day in association with the HR Community to promote healthy lifestyles, sharing the importance of prevention and healthy eating;
  • actions in support of parents to encourage a better balance be- tween work and childcare, such as the summer camp for boys and girls aged 6 to 14, created with the aim of promoting the values of sport among the younger generations, and the webinar on career guidance, aimed at parents and children aged 17 to 22.

Finally, also in 2021, the solidarity and food support project Sol- idarity Taxi was promoted in the Rome area in collaboration with the ACLI of Rome with the aim of providing concrete help to the neediest families and those most affected by the pandemic. The project involved the donations of parcels containing food and med- icine by employees, and former employees contributed by driving a Fiat Doblò, loaned free of charge by Acea, to deliver the solidarity parcels in the municipality of Rome. A total of 8,604 parcels were distributed, 4,552 shopping coupons and 200 school kits were donated to 4,969 families. Overall, the effort reached a total of 16,785 people of which 4,675 minors.

In compliance with the law110, there are employees belonging to pro- tected categories (disabled, orphans, etc.) who are guaranteed sup- port services, assistance and technical support tools to facilitate the performance of the tasks entrusted to them. In 2021, 206 employees (124 men and 82 women) belonged to protected categories. In the year under review, there were no cases of discrimination against Group employees in Acea.

110Italian law no. 68/99.