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Supporting our LGBTQ+ colleagues and communities

There are all kinds of different in the world. Some differences can be seen, others can’t. However people identify, whatever their difference, we want them to feel completely able to bring their authentic selves to work.

At Allen & Overy, we believe we are all responsible for ensuring our LGBTQ+ colleagues are welcomed, valued and confident they will not be excluded or held back. Wherever our people are in the world, we want them to know that A&O is safe ground.

 
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Diversity and inclusion at Allen & Overy
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We strive to ensure that every policy, process or initiative is supportive and inclusive, such as enabling everyone to define their preferred pronouns. As well as within our organisation, we know how important it is to influence the world beyond Allen & Overy, and so we undertake a significant amount of pro bono work to support LGBTQ+ communities around the world.

We are proud of the progress we have made in relation to LGBTQ+ inclusion, and are committed to creating an environment where everyone is treated with dignity and respect, free from harassment, bullying and discriminatory behaviour.

A lot of our progress has been driven by A&Out, our award-winning global network for our LGBTQ+ community, with over 100 members and 700 allies across the world.

Through A&Out, we aim to not only help all of our people to understand the power and importance of allyship, but also to ensure a workplace that is as welcoming and inclusive as possible.

Our key priorities are to:

  • Continue our work on promoting an inclusive environment
  • Ensure our global policies are inclusive
  • Help our people understand all strands of LGBTQ+, including raising awareness of non-binary, bi and trans identities

A&O recognised by Stonewall as Top Global Employer for LGBTQ+

We’re proud to have been recognised by Stonewall – a leading organisation that campaigns for LGBTQ+ rights – as one of only 17 Top Global Employers creating inclusive workplaces. Stonewall’s Top Global Employers Index is the definitive list of the best multinational employers for LGBTQ+ staff and we've now been listed for the third year running. We were also awarded the Global Ally Programme Award for A&Out.

Ending LGBTQ+ discrimination

As well as striving to create an inclusive environment for LGBTQ+ staff, we continue to work externally to break down barriers, support under-represented communities and play our part in ending LGBTQ+ discrimination.

For example, we work with the International Refugee Assistance Project on cases involving LGBTQ+ refugees who have been persecuted in their country of origin, and who face continued harassment and discrimination in the countries to which they have fled.

We’re on the legal panel of the Human Dignity Trust, which focuses on decriminalisation of homosexuality worldwide. And in London, we provided support for people to remove historic convictions for homosexual offences from their records.

Like all areas of inclusion, there is still a long way to go, but we’re determined to continue to make an impact.

Why being a LGBTQ+ ally is important, Fiona Cumming, Partner

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I want to work in an environment where everyone feels comfortable being themselves, both in the office and in the wider community in which we operate. Being an ally is how I contribute towards creating this environment for my LGBTQ+ colleagues. It’s small, everyday things that create an atmosphere of understanding and inclusion.

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