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updated on 22 October 2018
Nineteen leading law firms have signed up to ‘the social mobility pledge’, an initiative aimed at tackling the depressing lack of upward social mobility in British society.
The pledge was launched in Parliament by Conservative MP Justine Greening, the former education secretary. It commits employers to supporting social mobility through the adoption of CV-blind and contextual recruiting practices, as well as school outreach and apprenticeships.
In 2017, the Sutton Trust found that the UK is among the worst of the 37 countries in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development for income mobility – the ability of people to access professions outside of their class background and earn more than their parents. In the UK, only one in eight children from low-income backgrounds goes on to have a high-earning job, while five elite schools send more pupils per year to the universities of Oxford and Cambridge than 2,000 non-elite schools combined.
Over 100 organisations have signed up to the social mobility pledge so far, including the following law firms:
Greening commented: “In Britain, where a person is born and brought up should not still define how far they can progress in life, but it does. That’s unacceptable in the 21st Century. Solving our social mobility challenge is critical to Britain’s success and employers are a big part of the solution through the opportunities they create and the people who get them. If they make it a level playing field on talent then lots of things change for the good.
“It’s fantastic to see so many employees and sectors represented by the pledge but our work is only just beginning. We want all businesses, big and small, North and South, whatever the sector, signed up.”