National Inclusion Week is a week dedicated to celebrating inclusion and taking action to create inclusive workplaces. Read about the current and ongoing initiatives at CEL Solicitors as we strive to become an inclusive firm.
National Inclusion Week
Inclusion is defined by how well diverse groups of people are valued and integrated into an environment. An inclusive workplace means that employees feel comfortable and confident to be their authentic selves and work in a way that suits their needs and the businesses’ needs.
The theme for National Inclusion Week 2022 is ‘Time to Act: The Power of Now’, expressing that a proactive approach to inclusion is necessary to bring about impactful change. It is our responsibility as a workforce to push for inclusion, and there is no time like the present.
CEL Solicitors Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion
CEL Solicitors’ Diversity Committee was established in 2021. It aims to create a diverse, inclusive, and safe environment where staff feel supported, acknowledged, and can thrive. The committee meets monthly to discuss activity, progress being made, and importantly, what we can do next. From key speakers, who can help us shine a light on important topics to training providers, who can help educate us on key issues, the committee works hard to ensure diversity, equality and inclusion is prioritised within the firm.
Activities and ongoing initiatives:
- Diversity committee members attended the Liverpool Against Racism conference in April, which brought together industry leaders to take part in discussions and debates around systematic racism.
- The diversity committee held their monthly meeting in the Walker Art Gallery after viewing a decolonisation display which marketing executive, Rebecca co-curated.
- Social housing activist, Kwajo Tweneboa delivered a talk shedding light on the injustices in Britain’s social housing system and the cost of living crisis.
- Diversity committee members attended the Walk of Remembrance for Slavery Remembrance Day in August.
- For International Equal Pay Day, we welcomed business-owner, Andrea Edwards into the office to discuss confidence, goal setting, and negotiating salary.
- For Know Your Numbers Week, we welcomed Rebecca, a nurse prescriber into the firm to provide staff with a ‘Health MOT’.
- The Anthony Walker Foundation visited the firm to deliver a talk on Anthony’s story, where they encouraged our team to challenge their thinking and to practice tackling hate crime.
- We are currently in the process of adding more diverse books to our Book Club as we understand the importance of inclusive narratives and diverse positive representation.
- We are developing a new staff intranet page where the diversity committee can upload general news, updates, activities, recipes, and book recommendations.
Why is Inclusion Important in the Workplace?
Due to prejudice and unconscious bias, individuals from marginalised backgrounds can struggle immensely as they go through the recruitment process.
A recent study from the McKinsey report revealed that companies which are diverse in gender, ethnicity and culture are now more likely than ever to outperform less diverse peers on performance and profitability. So, despite the clear benefits, why are so many companies still failing to prioritise diversity and inclusion within the workplace?
One problem that businesses claim to face is a lack of diverse candidates applying to their vacancies. But to receive diverse applicants, businesses must first prioritise inclusivity and develop diverse recruitment strategies so that marginalised groups can feel encouraged to apply.
This can include:
- Widening your search
- Engaging with EDI (Equality, Diversity & Inclusion) consultants
- Building relationships with diverse organisations
- Showcasing and empowering your diverse talent
Diverse candidates will seek out companies that truly value inclusion, at all levels. It is important as a business to connect with, interview and hire a diverse set of individuals through understanding and valuing different backgrounds and opinions.
At CEL Solicitors, we are committed to being an inclusive and informed workplace through educating ourselves and engaging with as much activity as possible. It is important to us that our current and prospective employees feel valued and represented.
Commenting on National Inclusion Week 2022, Laura Hampson, a director and member of the diversity committee at CEL Solicitors, said:
“It’s only by embracing new perspectives and different lived experiences that we can all grow – both personally and professionally. At CEL Solicitors we recognise that unless you’re authentic and true to yourself, then you can’t fully contribute everything that your unique experience brings. Our vision for the business is to create a dynamic law firm where people want to work, and inclusivity is key to realising that ambition. So many people conform to what they think is expected of them at work, which stifles their creativity and limits their potential. We don’t want that here so we’re working hard to ensure our workplace is safe and inclusive.”
Our diversity committee is instrumental in vocalising their opinions, arranging activities, and developing initiatives which ensure that diversity and inclusion is prioritised within the firm. However, we acknowledge that we are a work in progress, and through listening, learning, and becoming active allies, we hope to positively contribute to the workplace and wider society even beyond National Inclusion Week.