find the latest legal job
Senior Associate - Litigation & Dispute Resolution
Category: Litigation and Dispute Resolution | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Come work for a firm ranked in Lawyers Weekly Top 25 Attraction Firms
View details
Associate - Workplace Relations & Safety
Category: Industrial Relations and Employment Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Employer of choice · Strong team culture
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Banking and Finance Law | Location: All Perth WA
· Freelance opportunities through Vario from Pinsent Masons
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Adelaide SA
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Oz leads DLA Piper’s global diversity program

Oz leads DLA Piper’s global diversity program

DLA Piper’s Australian arm has been the driving force behind the firm’s global initiative that aims to increase diversity in the legal profession.

Break into Law evolved out of an Australian diversity program called Break Through, which offers skills workshops to secondary students from underprivileged backgrounds. Ben Eavis (pictured), DLA Piper’s international corporate responsibility manager, told Lawyers Weekly that the local initiative, launched in 2010, is considered the firm’s strongest flagship program globally.

Break into Law takes the Australian template to the rest of the world, with a few minor adjustments to account for cultural differences.

“We’ve been running [Break Through] for a while; it’s tried and tested, we’ve developed a toolkit for it and it’s robust in application,” he said. “It works and we want to see if we can replicate it elsewhere.”

Part of the firm’s global initiative is to roll out Break Through in Hong Kong, Singapore and Bangkok over the next three months.

Other region-specific programs include: a work experience initiative and apprenticeship scheme in the UK; an education project in China to improve the standard of education in rural schools, and a mooting competition in the United Arab Emirates.

The latter provides Arab law students with experience in international law through sponsorship and training. Another focus area for the Middle East, where Eavis is based, is to support Saudi Arabian women to enter the workforce.

Last year, Lawyers Weekly reported that the Ministry of Justice in Saudi Arabia had announced plans to allow women to obtain a licence to practise law in a courtroom.

Al Tamimi & Company’s corporate head in the kingdom, Hesham Al Homoud, said the ministry’s directive would allow Saudi women to argue cases in court, have their own offices and, for the first time, represent male clients.

DLA Piper’s global diversity initiative may be focused on women in the Middle East, but in Australia, underrepresented groups include young people from underprivileged backgrounds and indigenous communities, said Eavis.

“Underrepresented means different things in different markets,” he added.

The ultimate aim of Break into Law, according to Eavis, is to recruit participants to DLA Piper – and not necessarily as lawyers. He explained that opportunities in marketing and administration within firms are piquing the interest of the program’s participants.

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Oz leads DLA Piper’s global diversity program
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Oct 20 2017
Podcast: One of law’s most infamous alumni – in conversation with Julian Morrow
In this episode of The Lawyers Weekly Show, Melissa Coade is joined by The Chaser’s Julian Morrow....
Oct 20 2017
High Court overturns ‘excessive’ anti-protest legislation
Bob Brown’s recent victory in the High Court over the Tasmanian government was a win for fundament...
Oct 20 2017
Changes to Australian citizenship laws blocked
Attempts to beef up the requirements to obtain Australian citizenship were thwarted this week, after...
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...