Australia: Norton Rose Fulbright unites its approach to diversity and inclusion globally
Last Updated: 14 March 2014

Norton Rose Fulbright has announced the expansion of its global diversity and inclusion advisory council (GDIAC) to include the United States, in a move which unites the worldwide vision and strategy of the practice.

US Managing partner Linda Addison and US lead diversity partner Gina Shishima joined the council in January 2014 to complete its global line up.

The council now comprises the chairman or managing partner from EMEA, Australia, Canada, South Africa and the US, supported by a local lead diversity partner in each region.

At the same time, the practice has announced Melbourne partner Sally Macindoe as its new global head of diversity and inclusion. In this capacity, she will chair the expanded GDIAC.

The council is accountable to global management and ensures consistency of effort, purpose and execution in diversity and inclusion initiatives around the world, while sharing best practice across all offices.

Peter Martyr, global chief executive, said:

"Norton Rose Fulbright has long been implementing local diversity initiatives, but the broadening of the council is the next step in developing and delivering one unified global diversity and inclusion strategy."

The council has a worldwide vision, with gender diversity and flexible working amongst its key global initiatives, as well as creating a more linguistically and culturally diverse workforce and responding to individual's responsibilities as parents and caregivers.

To date, inclusive leadership training and unconscious bias education have been delivered to partners in Australia and the US and will shortly be rolled out to partners globally. In addition to women's networks in many offices globally, LGBTA (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Allies) networks have been launched in London, Canada and recently across all the Australian offices, with other demographic specific employee networks set to follow.

Sally Macindoe, global head of diversity and inclusion and chair of GDIAC, said:

"Diversity is business critical; it is not a soft issue.

"We work in diverse markets with diverse clients; by mirroring that diversity internally, this allows us to understand our clients' needs, and provide better solutions. That is, however, only half of the equation, to be a truly inclusive organisation is paramount when creating a sustainable workforce of the future.

"We will harness the goals of the global business, but there is space within that to cater for local markets needs and interests."

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