SRA asks UK law firms to publish diversity data

May 14, 2013 The Solicitors Regulation Authority has asked major UK law firms to collect comprehensive data on diversity statistics with a view to making the numbers available to clients. The Authority hopes that publishing the data will put pressure on firms to increase diversity and improve access to the profession.

The first survey, published last year, had the participation of over 9,400 law firms, and 42 per cent of their total combined staffs 93,074 people out of 220,000, responded to the survey.

62% of respondents had attended university, while a further 30% did not and the remaining 8% chose not to respond. 10% of respondents described themselves as coming from black or minority ethnic backgrounds, while 93% described themselves as heterosexual. 

SRA director of inclusion Mehrunnisa Lalani said: "We are hoping for a better response rate this year, particularly among the larger firms that have already been publishing their data – like Clifford Chance and Linklaters. Firms should take responsibility for this – they know their workforce better than we do.” 

This year’s survey process will require firms to publish a summary of their diversity statistics online or in their annual reports.

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