City firms set ethnicity targets

updated on 17 November 2020

A number of City firms have revealed new ethnicity targets in response to the global Black Lives Matter protests.

Using 2025 as the deadline, City firm Norton Rose Fulbright is aiming for 25% of its employees, including partners, to be from Black, Asian or Minority Ethnic (BAME) backgrounds. The firm also set targets to improve diversity and inclusion within its trainee intake by 2025, including for 25% of the intake to be from BAME backgrounds and 10% to be black.

A reverse mentoring programme, ‘active bystander’ training and three new career programmes for BAME employees are among the City firm’s plans to facilitate this movement and their diversity focus.

Dentons launched its ‘Accelerating Race Strategy Plan’ in October with plans to reach its 20% partner diversity target for its UK, Ireland and Middle East partnership by 2025. The Black Lives Matter protests were at the heart of the international firm’s target setting. The firm’s UK, Ireland and Middle East CEO Jeremy Cohen said: “We must tackle racial injustice if we are to become the most inclusive firm we aspire to be. This is a priority for our firm, and it is my personal priority to work with our Black Professionals Network and Asian Professionals Network to create the type of firm where everyone can thrive."

Meanwhile, magic circle firm Linklaters revealed its plans to improve partnership diversity and train 100% of its employees on anti-racism.

The firm’s Race Action Plan, which includes a number of “aspirational targets” to recruit and retain diverse talent, as well as strengthen partnership diversity affirms its “commitment to anti-racism”.  Starting from the 2020/21 recruitment cycle, the firm aims to recruit 35% minority ethnic trainees each year, “of whom 10% will be Black”.