Firms and chambers to be set “specific gender targets” for senior roles

updated on 24 June 2019

The bodies representing solicitors, barristers and chartered legal executives have pledged to “achieve gender equality in the senior ranks” by getting firms and chambers to sign up to specific gender targets.

The Women in Law pledge, launched by the Law Society, Bar Council and Chartered Institute of Legal Executives, asks firms, chambers and other organisations to commit to “specific gender targets” and publish them. As Legal Futures reports, organisations that sign up will also be required to make a member of the senior leadership team responsible for diversity and inclusion and ensure that assessment of senior leaders’ performance is linked to gender equality targets.

Now the onus is on organisations to sign up. Christina Blacklaws, president of the Law Society, said: “In signing the Women in Law pledge, legal organisations across the country will hold themselves accountable for gender equality in their workforce and commit to creating a more diverse profession.”

Richard Atkins QC, chair of the Bar Council, added: “This pledge reflects the joint understanding between the legal professions of the importance of diversity. It will allow chambers and organisations in which barristers work to demonstrate their commitment to a balanced and equal future for all.”