I. Stephanie Boyce calls on the legal sector to adopt the Black History Month theme, “Time for Change: Action, Not Words” in her final year as President of the Law Society.
I. Stephanie Boyce has announced she will be leaving the Law Society of England and Wales as Black History Month encourages people to improve the future by taking real and lasting action to make the world a better place best for blacks.
I. Stephanie Boyce said: “Black people are often victims of racism and discrimination. Then they are supposed to fix it. This must change.
The Law Society is taking action for its members by talking to black lawyers about their experiences working in the profession.
In 2020 he published his Race for Inclusion Reportwho shed new light on this issue and indicated how it could build a more inclusive profession.
I. Stephanie Boyce added, “Our research uncovered the challenges and barriers that Black, Asian, and ethnic minority lawyers face because of their ethnicity.
“Negative discrimination was reported by 13% of black, Asian and minority ethnic lawyers, and 16% reported bullying.
“A third of black lawyers in Africa and the Caribbean say they have experienced some form of discrimination or intimidation in the workplace – the highest figure reported by any ethnic group.
“The lack of progression in larger companies was also a problem. 34% of partners in sole-partner firms are from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds.
“As part of our report, we recommended that companies have open and honest conversations about race and what needs to change in their organization, implement blind and contextualized recruitment, set goals for executives superiors and instill a data-driven approach to diversity and inclusion.”
There have been signs of improvement in the two years since the Law Society’s research. Its 2021 Annual Statistical Report found that the representation of black, Asian and ethnic minority lawyers continued to grow, reaching 18% and that black, Asian and ethnic minority lawyers working in private practice increased by 6%.
I. Stephanie Boyce added, “However, there is still work to be done to increase the representation of people from black, Asian and minority backgrounds and from lower socio-economic backgrounds. Only 1% of lawyers working in the city are black.
“To help firms develop and implement a strategic approach to D&I, the Law Society recently launched our Diversity and Inclusion Framework.
“Our D&I framework helps workplaces drive change by providing a proactive three-step action plan that will help our members develop and implement a strategy that creates lasting change.
“Improving diversity and inclusion in the legal profession has always been one of my main ambitions as President.
“I hope the work I have done during my tenure as President has improved the way the profession recruits and retains talent. An individual’s personal characteristics or socio-economic background should not determine how far people can go.
“I can’t wait to celebrate Black History Month with my colleagues in the profession.”