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Clifford Chance announces 40% female, 15% ethnic minority and 3% LGBTQ+ partner targets

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Magic circle firm looks to set new industry standard

Clifford Chance (CC) has today announced a series of targets for gender, ethnicity and LGBTQ+ inclusion.

The magic circle firm aims to have at least 40% female partners globally by 2030. Other levels throughout the firm, including to counsel, senior associates, associates, business professional directors and leadership groups, will be expected to reach this 40% target by 2025.

At present, according to the Legal Cheek‘s Firms Most List, CC has 24% UK female partners. The percentage is lower in most of the other jurisdictions in which the firm has a presence.

CC has also introduced its first-ever ethnic minority and LGBTQ+ targets. By 2025 the firm wants 15% of new partners and 30% of senior associates to be from ethnic minority backgrounds.

There is an LGBTQ+ target too, with CC aiming for 3% of partners globally to be LGBTQ+ by 2025.

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Matthew Layton, global managing partner at Clifford Chance, said: “Creating an inclusive environment is at the heart of our Clifford Chance values, and is good for our industry, our firm, our colleagues and our clients. While we are making progress, and are proud of doing so, I recognise that today, inclusion and equality of opportunity isn’t the lived experience for many of our people and we have to do much better.”

Layton continued:

“To make the change that our people, our clients and society expect from us, we need to be actively campaigning and forging positive, inclusive environments which are enriched by the diversity of our people. We have already seen how we can use data to focus attention on our inclusion challenges and their root causes. Our new targets will be a powerful catalyst for the change we want to see and I hope they will set a new standard for our industry.”

Tiernan Brady, global director of inclusion at Clifford Chance, added:

“Behind the targets announced today is a tailored set of initiatives that represents a comprehensive strategy to deliver greater inclusion. The top of our firm needs to look like the rest of the firm and the societies we are based in. It is both a core value and an economic imperative, and it is the future for the legal sector.”

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