The Law Society of New South Wales promotes diversity, equality
and inclusion in the legal profession, in particular by developing
and progressing initiatives to ensure the equality of opportunity
for all members of the profession, regardless of race, ethnicity,
heritage, gender, age, religion, disability, sexual orientation,
gender identity or intersex status.
Women make up about 50 per cent of the legal profession, and
have made significant advances in all areas of practice. However
impediments still remain to the retention and career progression of
women in the profession.
The Law Society's Charter for the Advancement of Women is
designed to promote and support strategies to retain women in the
profession over the course of their careers and encourage and
promote their career progression into senior executive and
The Charter aims to achieve this by assisting legal practices to
develop cultures which promote diversity and inclusion and impact
positively on all practitioners in their workplaces, resulting in
better business outcomes for legal practices, the legal profession
and the community as a whole.
In support of this initiative, the signatories to this Charter
demonstrating leadership by implementing diversity and
inclusion principles in the legal profession and removing gender
bias and discrimination in the legal workplace;
driving change in the legal profession by developing a culture
that supports the retention of women legal practitioners and
recognises their value in senior roles;
implementing recruitment and promotion strategies that include
gender diversity as an important consideration, including ensuring
equal pay for legal graduates within the same organisation
regardless of gender;
promoting and supporting mentoring and sponsorship of women in
the legal profession;
encouraging and supporting flexible work practices in the legal
profession to assist men and women to better balance professional
and other commitments.
Signatories agree to implement these strategies within two years
of signing the Charter, with the exception of equal pay for
graduates, which will be implemented within 12 months.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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This third and final part of this Innovation series looks ahead to building a culture of Lean
Law within law firms.
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