'They Used Me For a Pitch, Then Excluded Me': How Major Law Firms are Using Their Black Lawyers to Mislead On Diversity
A Law.com International investigation has uncovered how tokenism is rife across the UK's legal industry with a host of Black and minority lawyers describing how their names and images were used on client pitches and promotional materials they had nothing to do with.
Makeup artist Zunera, whose bridal prices start from £350, disagrees that it is a scam. "[Bridal makeup] is not a dishonest scheme. It's a service which someone is providing. If a customer is willing to pay £1,000, then that's their decision. No one is forcing them."
The South Asian tradition of scalp oiling is about family, community and passing down stories, not just shiny hair
I’m 10 years old and it’s late on a Sunday afternoon. I’ve just finished haphazardly drying my hair with a dryer that’s almost certainly on its last legs. The smoky, singed smell coming out of it signals the rude reality of living in a house with four women who all have the same hair-wash day as you.
The second I flick the hairdryer off, my mum appears at the bottom of the stairs, shouting for me to bring down the coconut oil. It’s time for my weekly scalp massage.
So why, in 2019, are critical remarks still part and parcel of growing up as an Asian-Indian? Of course, some blame can be attributed to the beauty industry. Our good friends at Fair & Lovely (a skin-lightening cosmetic product) have played a role in perpetuating the light skin ideal. My cousins in Kenya used this cream too, as living in a hot country was deemed detrimental to their appearance. The media’s discussion of the Indian film actress Bipasha Basu as being 'too dark' for Bollywood, dubbing her an 'unconventional' heroine, is another example of the industry’s enemy lines.
“I was attracted to the shiny law firm associate life.”
Celine*, a former associate at a top tier law firm in the U.K., is upfront about what sold her the dream of private practice.
Hair is a huge part of South Asian beauty culture. Many South Asian women aspire to have long, silky and thick lengths, with the pursuit of healthy hair embedded into our beauty routines from day one.
And I mean literally. As newborns, our heads are shaved in a tradition which is said to ensure thicker hair growth in adult life. But arguably the most crucial rule in South Asian hair maintenance is regular hair oiling.
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton’s decision to fire a four-partner team last week after the firm learned of their planned exit to Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer has surprised many in the market, with a number of partners and recruiters criticising the decision and warning of the impact it might have on the firm.
Anita Kerai decided to take a career leap at the age of 41 years old. She said goodbye to numbers and bland offices in her financial accounting job, and gave a passionate hello to the fragrant and rewarding taste of her new life. After successfully turning her hobby of cooking into a fulfilling career, which includes a TV series following her “Return to Kenya”, Kerai, a Kenyan-Indian chef who now lives in Harrow, says that despite setbacks, you ‘just have to push on’. Kerai spoke to us about life, her career highlights as well as her words of wisdom for those who may not have taken the leap...
Law firm diversity, inclusion in the workplace and reducing unconscious bias have fast become some of the key priorities for the legal industry. A recruiter’s unconscious bias, whether it relates to gender, race, or another diversity factor, can mean the difference between one candidate securing a legal position over another. As the industry strives to be more inclusive, could unconscious bias training be the key?
Wealdstone Library – or the Wealdstone Centre – is more than just books, newspapers and computers. The library, among its shelves and shelves of great reads, is a hub of history, friendship and community. Varsha Patel spoke to Joshua Cartwright, library supervisor at the Wealdstone Centre for the past seven years, about his favourite memories of the library, what he’s reading at the moment, as well as the theme of the Summer 2019 Reading Challenge.
Insurance & Reinsurance analysis: Sonia Campbell, partner and Alex Bromley-Martin, trainee solicitor, at Mishcon de Reya discuss the impact climate change has had on the insurance industry and how the industry can engender good risk management practices, as well as some challenges the industry may face in incorporating climate change action into insurance policies. Interviewed by Varsha Patel.
PwC has announced it will ban all-male shortlists for jobs, in order to increase the number of women in senior roles. PwC's chief people officer, Laura Hinton, told the BBC that the move would be ‘a real game changer’. Lawyers from Lewis Silkin, Mishcon de Reya and Stewarts warn that including women on shortlists will not necessarily ‘solve the problem of gender imbalance in senior roles’, arguing firms must promote a range of other polices to ensure women can progress into senior roles.
Financial Services analysis: As part of a series exploring the ‘blockchain boom’, in this article, Charlotte Wilson, managing associate, and Tom Grogan, associate, at Mishcon de Reya, examine the concept of blockchain technology and its utility in the financial services sector. Interviewed by Varsha Patel.
Local Government analysis: Jason Hobday, associate at Womble Bond Dickinson, discusses the implications of recent government guidance documents which intend to enforce greater protections from rogue landlords.
IP analysis: Fast fashion—rapidly producing clothing in line with the latest catwalk trends at a high street price—has certainly been in season recently. However, the legal lines are blurred when it comes to ‘the copycat game’ in fast fashion production. As part of a series exploring various legal issues of fast fashion, Andrew Bravin, associate at Sheridans, and Dr Eleonora Rosati, associate professor in intellectual property law at the University of Southampton, discuss potential IP issues posed by the fast fashion trend, and how the law can tackle these. Interviewed by Varsha Patel.