Female hostesses at ICE Totally Gaming, one of the world’s biggest gambling exhibitions, have been told to wear ‘nothing more than swimsuits’ to attract buyers to their stands.
The event runs 6-8 February at ExCeL London.
It has been reported that the chief executive of the Gambling Commission, Sarah Harrison, is calling for an end to sexism in the gaming industry.
Harrison warned that the regulator could boycott the event in future unless the way women are treated changes.
Harrison told The Independent: “This is an industry where we have a number of talented, powerful and successful women.
“Yet from walking around the exhibition you wouldn’t know this. Instead you saw men representing their companies wearing expensive tailored suits while their female colleagues were expected to wear nothing more than swimsuits. I say bring this to an end now.”
A letter to delegates from Clarion Events, which organises the event, read: “In the spirit of the 21st century, when women and men play strategic and decision-making roles in businesses, we encourage all exhibitors to mindfully represent support staff promoting their products at the showing a non-offensive and non-stereotyping way.” It added: “The respectful representation of genders is crucial.”
In January, allegations of groping and sexual harassment came to light following an FT expose at the all-male Presidents Club dinner.
The Professional Darts Corporation brought to an end its long-standing tradition of employing women to walk with male players to the stage while Formula One has also ditched grid girls.