From Baker McKenzie: "We have implemented actions and initiatives to facilitate education on anti-racism"
A professional from recognized law firm Baker McKenzie responds to The Impact Lawyers´ questions about Race and Ethnicity policies
Do you have a policy within your firm at a global level to prevent and detect racist cases, both with your staff and with your clients?
Across the Firm we have implemented actions and initiatives to facilitate education on anti-racism; foster inclusion; and promote active allyship, advocacy and inclusive leadership. A Global Task Force on Racial and Ethnic Diversity has been established to ensure that we continue to make progress in this area. Our global Respect, Inclusion and Workplace Behaviour Policy, helps maintain a positive, safe, diverse and inclusive working environment for all of our people.
We are at a time when many countries and organizations are demonstrating against the racism that has prevailed in our society for a long time. Has Baker McKenzie also made some demonstration?
Our Executive Committee recently put out a global statement against racism and discrimination: https://www.bakermckenzie.com/en/newsroom/2020/06/we-are-not-neutral
In addition we have also:
• Created a Global Task Force on Racial and Ethnic Diversity to implement and operationalize programs to advance racial and ethnic diversity, including allyship and anti-racism training; sponsorship of our Black colleagues and members of other underrepresented racial and ethnic groups. This Task Force will work alongside strong local initiatives including the Anti-Racism Task Force in North America and groups in London, Australia and many other offices in every region around the world.
• In certain offices across the Firm we have enacted specific targets for racial and ethnic diversity in our leadership to measure against and achieve by 2025. They are supported by strategic initiatives aimed at achieving our goals.
• Created and distributed an Educational Resource Guide on the topic of anti-racism.
• Launched an Active Listening and Learning campaign focused on colleagues sharing their stories, experiences and perspectives, including the creation of a powerful video compilation of professionals across the firm and how they have been impacted by recent events.
• We are a signatory to local initiatives including the Law Firm Antiracism Alliance in the US, which seeks to promote racial equity in the law and in government institutions, and one of the initial signatories of the Race at Work Charter in the UK, focused on ensuring ethnic minority representation at all levels of organizations.
• Our North America offices commemorated Juneteenth as a paid Firm holiday for the first time this year and recently adopted a Billable Hour Credit policy for activities promoting diversity and inclusion.