Pinsent Masons recognised for role in pushing for marriage equality
Pinsent Masons has been recognised by a leading LGBT charity for its work towards marriage equality in Northern Ireland.
The international law firm was named the most inclusive employer in the UK by Stonewall in its Top 100 Employers list for 2019.
In their deliberations, judges recognised the prominent role played by the firm’s Belfast office in the #Business4LoveEquality campaign, with both head of office Andrea McIlroy-Rose and employment partner Paul Gillen appearing as public advocates for equal marriage.
Pinsent Masons was commended for its range of inclusive policies and practices for LGBT staff, including the introduction of specific trans-inclusive employee training to create a welcoming environment for trans colleagues, clients and visitors.
Mr Gillen said: “As a firm, we can be proud of this recognition, and in Belfast we are undoubtedly pleased to have played a role in this effort. However our role in the campaign #Business4LoveEquality goes on, as the full rights and freedoms of LGBT people in the region remain as yet unfulfilled.
“The business case for marriage equality is compelling, both in terms of retaining and attracting talent, and also to send out a message to international investors that Northern Ireland is a modern, outward looking economy, with a progressive attitude on personal freedoms and rights.”
Richard Foley, senior partner at Pinsent Masons, added: “This is a very special achievement for us. It isn’t about reaching the top spot; it’s about what the Stonewall Workplace Equality Index stands for and what everyone engaged in it is working so hard to accomplish.
“Pinsent Masons was the first law firm to be ranked in the Index in 2008. Today the legal sector is represented by over 16 firms. Our ranking recognises that like many other organisations we are championing LGBT+ inclusion in everything that we do. Pinsent Masons has created an inclusive workplace that enables everyone to be themselves; from our recruitment processes through to our engagement with clients.
“We have a responsibility to champion change in the wider community. Supporting initiatives such as the campaign for marriage equality in Northern Ireland play an important role in prompting progress on the equality issues that we believe must be addressed.”