#LegalPride2023: Solicitors in the spotlight

Newly released data unveiled for Pride highlights the experiences of Lesbian Gay and Bisexual (LGB) solicitors, with 80% feeling supported by their peers and 78% feeling that the work they do is meaningful.

The Law Society’s 2022 Practising Certificate (PC) Holder Survey reveals the workplace culture faced by LGB solicitors.

Seven in 10 (69%) of LGB solicitors felt comfortable to express themselves at work and felt supported by their line manager (70%), with eight in 10 (80%) saying they felt their job utilised their skills.

However, there are areas where the future of the profession needs to improve.

Around six in 10 (58%) felt their job offered good prospects for career progression and nearly half (47%) of LGB solicitors felt their managers are good at involving employees in decision-making. Worryingly, four in 10 (39%) said they found it difficult to relax during personal time due to thinking about work.

Law Society President Lubna Shuja said:

“The solicitor profession has made progress on LGBTQ+ equality in recent decades.

Like all solicitors, LGBTQ+ solicitors play an important role in upholding the rule of law, helping shape the justice system and fighting for their clients’ rights.

But there is still work to be done.

We know that solicitors entering the profession may need to make decisions about whether to come out or identify as trans or non-binary in the workplace and with clients.

We continue to support our LGBTQ+ members and advocate for inclusive workplaces where our LGBTQ+ colleagues are able to be their authentic selves at work.”

The 2021 census asked about sexual orientation and gender identity for the first time, shedding much-needed light on the make-up of the LGBTQ+ population of the UK.

The census found that 89.4% of respondents identified as heterosexual and 3.2% identified as gay, lesbian, bisexual or another sexual orientation.

1.5% identified as gay or lesbian, 1.3% identified as bisexual and 0.5% said their gender identity was different to their sex registered at birth. These statistics closely align with the profession.

Lubna Shuja concluded:

“We will continue to speak with our LGBTQ+ members about their experiences and support them in their careers. No-one should be discriminated against for being themselves.

We stand alongside our LGBTQ+ colleagues and LGBTQ+ allies this Pride and raise awareness of the barriers to inclusion for LGBTQ+ people.”

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