We have produced information, guides and advice to help you, our members, and your organisations promote equality and diversity and eliminate the gender pay gap. These include an Equal Pay Toolkit, our Parents in the Profession guides, the Equality Standards, and a Menopause Support Resource.
One of the biggest issues in this area currently is the gender pay gap. While our profession is not unique in facing the challenge of a gender pay gap, we want to continue having open and positive discussion about gender equality and what we can all do.
Take a look at the questions below and get involved in the conversation. Discuss them with colleagues and friends, tell us your views by email, or join the conversation in our social media groups using #LetsTalkProgression
- What benefits does diversity offer our profession?
- What can we do to promote thinking about gender equality?
- What can you do to promote diversity and challenge the gender pay gap?
- How can we ensure diversity at senior levels across the profession?
- Does your social or ethnic background affect your career options?
- What should we do to close the pay gap?
- How can you progress your career and have a family?
- Why do so many women in their 30s leave the profession?
- Why do so few men take up shared parental leave?
- Should we encourage more men to study law?
The Equality Standards, guides and other information are supplemented by regular blogs from experts and events covering key issues.
This year's Christmas may have been overtaken by the coronavirus pandemic, but there is still light to be found in the darkness of these difficult times, says, Mary Macleod, Solicitor of the Church of the Church of Scotland Law Department.
With this year's Christmas celebrations taking on a rather different guise to normal, Michael P. Clancy, Director of Law Reform at the Law Society of Scotland, considers the story at the heart of this Christian festival and the enduring comfort and hope it brings.
To celebrate Christmas this year, Jamie Kerr, a Partner at Burness Paull, reflects on the message of hope and redemption that this festive time brings.
For the United Nations' International Day of Persons with Disabilities on 3 December, John Ballantine, a member of our Equalities Law Sub-Committee, a retired solicitor, a disabled person and a Member of the SSC Society, reflects on six ways that life has changed for disabled solicitors, since he qualified in 1981.
Tim Mouncer, Public Affairs Manager at the Law Society of Scotland, tells us about his experience of taking shared parental leave and his hopes that it becomes an expected norm for fathers.
Tim Taylor, an Associate Solicitor at Hastings Legal and member of our Property and Land Law Reform Law Sub-Committee, writes a letter to his 16-month-old son Ben reflecting on men's wellbeing and what it means to be a "good man".
Gregory Stachura, a Knowledge & Development lawyer in Banking Practice at Burness Paull, discusses how the experience of his father's efforts to be a fully involved dad has impacted his own approach to fatherhood, even when flexible and part-time working for dads was less-than fashionable.
How can we challenge our own biases and become an anti-racist ally? Jamila Archibald, a solicitor in the commercial disputes and regulation team at Shepherd and Wedderburn explores the different types of bias in a Black History Month blog for us.
The fight for justice and inclusion, regardless of colour or creed, is a shared history that we must all strive to build upon to ensure a society and profession where everyone can thrive, says Tsepiso Forrest, a DPLP student at Robert Gordon University (RGU) and volunteer at the Citizen Advice Bureaux in Nairn and RGU Law Clinic.
Tatora Mukushi, a Dual-Qualified Human Rights Solicitor currently leading Shelter Scotland’s Migrant Destitution Project, discusses the tightly interwoven history of Scotland and Black people, arguing that education on the topic is crucial to creating meaningful change and that lawyers have a vital role to play.
As the professional body for solicitors in Scotland, we have responsibilities to the profession, to the public, and as an employer.
To represent and protect these diverse groups, we recognise the need to:
- value the contribution from all who make up the population of Scotland
- take strength from the widest experience, knowledge and understanding it can access - both within and outwith our membership
- go beyond legal compliance by integrating diversity into all that we do
- promote the core values of diversity to the profession as a whole
We, alongside the legal profession, have various responsibilities in relation to equality and diversity covered by legislation and statutory codes.
- as employers
- as a regulator of the profession
- as providers of 'goods and services' (to the public).
We also have additional responsibilities under the Equality Act 2010 as a:
- 'public authority' in respect of our public functions
- service provider to the profession
- trade (membership) organisation
- qualifications body
You can view our key research in this area over the last 10 years, some looking at the whole sector and collecting data to let us assess change, and others looking at specific groups, such as minority ethnic solicitors, or specific issues, like bullying.