Law firms hostile to anti-bias proposals
Monday 19 April 1993
Local law societies greeted proposals for practices to draw up equal opportunities policies with hostility. And they virulently objected to an idea that they should adopt targets for the recruitment of staff from ethnic minorities.
Even black solicitors who have long complained about racism in the profession are astonished by reaction to the package put forward by the Law Society, their governing body in London. Jacqueline Harris, of the Society of Black Lawyers, said the response had served to reinforce the 'stereotypical image' of solicitors. 'I didn't think it would be welcomed with open arms but I am surprised at the overall negativity.'
The Law Society issued its plans in a consultation document last autumn. This followed widespread criticism that women and people from ethnic minorities faced discrimination throughout the profession. It suggested that practices should be compelled to draw up equal opportunities policies. All but the smallest firms would try to recruit at least 5 per cent of their lawyers and 10 per cent of their trainees from ethnic minorities.
Jonathan Goldsmith, secretary of the Law Society's race relations committee, said the responses divided into two categories. 'Those likely to be victims of discrimination were all in favour: people not likely to be victims tended to oppose it.'
A handful of large city firms said that although they had no objection to an equal opportunities policy, they did not want to be saddled with targets. But a majority of the 32 local law societies that responded were hostile to the principle, describing the policies as misconceived and unnecessary.
Mr Goldsmith said the replies were representative of the 127 local law societies in England and Wales.
The Law Society could still ignore the objections and press ahead with policies that include targets. Sources said they expected the policies to be modified, but not scrapped.
- 1 Drugs Live cannabis trial: Hash is less harmful than any other drug, expert claims
- 2 Have sex with your iPad thanks to the new sex toy no-one asked for
- 3 The 'sex selfie stick' lets you FaceTime the inside of a vagina
- 4 Adam Levine's biggest fan had a panic attack upon meeting him, so the singer laid down on the floor to get a photo with him
- 5 Why you're almost certainly more like your father than your mother
Out-of-touch MPs ‘don’t get it’, says ex-Civil Service chief
Mark Zuckerberg: Facebook CEO's one simple test for who to hire
Bali nine: Welcome to 'Execution Island' – the Indonesian holiday resort where foreigners are sent to die
'A girl is more responsible for rape than a boy': The statement that shocked the world... except India
The 'sex selfie stick' lets you FaceTime the inside of a vagina
Durham Free School: 'Creationism taught at' free school facing closure
Nearly 100,000 of Britain's poorest children go hungry after parents' benefits are cut
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
End of the licence fee: BBC to back radical overhaul of how it is funded
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin and says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'
Boris Nemtsov shot dead: Outspoken Putin critic who had expressed fears for his life is killed near the Kremlin
£45000 - £55000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior VMware Platform En...
£10000 - £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A distributor of specialist ele...
£17000 - £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A distributor of specialist ele...
£32000 per annum + pension, healthcare & 23 days holiday: Ashdown Group: A gro...