Baker McKenzie is one of the first law firms to become a signatory of the Race at Work Charter, representing a collective commitment to tackle barriers facing ethnic minorities in the workplace.
Announced by the Prime Minister today, the Charter, developed jointly by the government and Business in the Community (BITC), sets out a bold set of principles and actions designed to drive forward a step-change in the recruitment and progression of ethnic minority employees.
Baker McKenzie accompanies a number of high-profile businesses including NHS England, Standard Life Aberdeen, Norton Rose Fulbright, Saatchi & Saatchi, KPMG, RBS, Lloyds Banking Group, the Civil Service and WPP, pledging to increase ethnic minorities in the workplace.
Baker McKenzie Diversity & Inclusion Partner, Sarah Gregory, said: "Huge progress has been made to improve the experience of ethnic minority colleagues in the workplace, but more still needs to be done. This is why, we are very excited today to be signing the Race at Work Charter and together with the Government and other businesses look at improving ethnic minority representation at all levels of seniority. The Charter builds on our ongoing commitment as a Firm to recognise and celebrate the talent of our diverse workforce and to ensure that everyone can be their authentic selves."
This is a continuation of the good work the Firm is already doing around ethnic minority inclusion in the workplace. In 2017, Baker McKenzie was named as one of the UK’s Best Employers for Race in a new listing by the charity Business in the Community. Last October, the Firm launched the Colour Brave campaign in its London office, which seeks to create an environment where people feel comfortable talking openly about race and ethnicity. It is one of a number of initiatives led by BakerEthnicity which focuses on increasing the representation of BAME talent in the office. Baker McKenzie was the first law firm, for example, to introduce name blind recruitment removing the potential for discrimination based on name.
The Firm has also partnered with a number of key organisations, including Race for Opportunity, NOTICED, the BLD Foundation and the Black British Business Awards. Facilities Manager, Michelle Venson was a shortlisted nominee for the Precious Awards 2018, celebrating women of colour in business.