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Clifford Chance champions LGBT equality with launch of global Ally programme

21 September 2015

Clifford Chance champions LGBT equality with launch of global Ally programme

Clifford Chance has created the firm's first global allies programme, Arcus Allies, with the firm's entire Executive Leadership Group and other senior leaders signing up. The initiative launched with a presentation and discussion streamed to the firm's offices worldwide.

The launch of Arcus Allies will see Clifford Chance push to recruit allies to support LGBT colleagues throughout the firm, with the aim of fostering a growing culture of inclusion by creating a space where LGBT people feel more supported and able to be themselves.

Matthew Layton, Managing Partner of Clifford Chance, comments: "As an Arcus Ally I see the positive impact that supporting LGBT colleagues brings. This programme is important because we all have a critical role to play in building and nurturing an inclusive culture in which our LGBT colleagues, and indeed all colleagues, can feel comfortable and confident as part of our team."

Arcus Allies will be asked to play an active role in bringing about a more inclusive environment by, for example, being proactive and asking LGBT colleagues about their lives and speaking up to demonstrate support for LGBT equality.

Narind Singh, Clifford Chance partner champion of Arcus, adds: "We know that performance improves when someone can be themselves, rather than using energy to cover up their background. This isn't a one-off issue for those in the workplace – the decision to cover-up or come out can arise every time someone meets a new colleague or client so it really adds up.

"One of the most powerful ways to make life easier is having other colleagues, particularly senior ones, acknowledge LGBT life. Too often people who actually support LGBT equality are worried about saying the wrong thing, and the resulting silence can be misinterpreted as disapproval. We want to encourage people to speak up at Clifford Chance so our people know they have the support of their colleagues, regardless of who they are."