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City law firms and chambers come together for #10000BlackInterns initiative

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National campaign gets underway next year with aim to provide paid internships for black graduates

Nearly 30 legal organisations have come together to back the national #10000BlackInterns initiative. The Law Society of England and Wales joined this week and is encouraging wider participation across the profession.

The campaign gets underway in the summer of next year and aims to run for the next five years — providing 10,000 paid internships to black graduates in the UK. It was founded last summer to help broaden career opportunities for young black people and address the under-representation of black talent in industries including the law.

Already 22 law firms and five chambers have confirmed their participation in the scheme. This includes the magic circle firm Linklaters, which signed up in the autumn, as well as big-name City law firms Osborne Clarke, Taylor Wessing and Travers Smith. On the other side of the profession, 4 Paper Buildings became the first family set to get onboard last week, and joins the Bar Council and other chambers including Keating, Littleton, Matrix and QEB Hollis Whiteman.

Law Society president David Greene said: “The law can offer a rewarding and fulfilling career. We hope interning at The Law Society — or law firms signed up to the initiative — will open doors for aspiring young black talent and inspire participants to pursue a legal career.”

Greene added:

“We are proud to participate in the #10000BlackInterns initiative and encourage law firms and legal businesses to take part and invest in the next generation of young black talent.”

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Recent Law Society research laid bare the experiences of black, asian and minority ethnic (BAME) solicitors in the law, and put forward a series of recommendations to build a more diverse and inclusive profession.

Last month the Society announced it is to investigate its historical links with slavery and colonialism. The findings will be released in the autumn.

Other industries taking part in #10000BlackInterns include education, healthcare, insurance, technology, banking and finance, and the Big Four accountancy firms.

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12 Comments

Oxbridge Grad

As a BAME person who did many unpaid legal internships back in the day, I would rather have had a legal career at the end of it all than to see many of my White classmates get one without bothering to do any internships or pro bono work.

(17)(51)

Anonymous

Why the focus on just 3% of the population when the elephant in the room is socioeconomic discrimination?

(90)(12)

Tarquin

I own an elephant

(6)(2)

Not This Again

Because BAME people can’t choose to avoid racism. They can’t self-identify as White to fit in and are consistently passed over for opportunities and leadership positions even with the same grades and work ethic as White people.

There is no socioeconomic ‘discrimination’ if a self-identified ‘working class’ person chooses not to bother with A Levels or aiming for a reputable university because they think a good education is only for ‘posh people’.

It smacks of resentment towards the steps being taken to help BAME people that have worked hard for the necessary grades, without excuses.

(22)(76)

Anonymous

So you are saying a BAME student who attended an expensive private school is going to suffer greater challenges in a professional career than a kid from a council estate who is the in family to attend uni or join a profession?

Worse by alleging that the working class “choose to fail” you are slandering a huge swathe of hard working students by saying the problems they face are their fault. It is the equivalent of Daily Mail readers telling black kids to dress white, act white and talk white, after all black kids “choose” to follow black culture don’t they?

(65)(4)

Working Class Person

People go to jail for slander, don’t they?

Frees peach, innit?

(0)(10)

anon

> There is no socioeconomic ‘discrimination’ if a self-identified ‘working class’ person chooses not to bother with A Levels or aiming for a reputable university because they think a good education is only for ‘posh people’.

Spoken like someone who didn’t grow up poor.

(21)(31)

A Little Help Please

Just wondering about your last sentence. Why do BAME, as BAME people, need help and what is your evidence to support that alleged need?

I’m particularly interested in how your evidence moderates for and isolates socioeconomic discrimination given the BAME population is disproportionality in the lower socioeconomic groups.

(28)(2)

Anon

Absolutely. The Hannahs and the Ryans of this world have a far harder time than the Isabellas and the Henrys.

(24)(2)

Anonymous

Lol at the obsessive clicking on the upvote and downvote button.

Perhaps you would have a TC already if you didn’t spend so much time away from revision?

(2)(17)

Anon

We need to focus on working class people. What chambers and law firms should be doing is giving internships to kids from state schools.

(13)(0)

anon

Superb initiative. Congratulations to all the firms and chambers involved.

(14)(38)

Comments are closed.

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