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Freshfields named one of Stonewall’s Top Global Employers 2023

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (‘Freshfields’) has been included in the Stonewall Top Global Employers List 2023 this year, achieving GOLD status. The Employers List, highlighting the top international employers for LGBTQ+ professionals, is compiled from submissions made to Stonewall’s Global Workplace Equality Index. This index serves as a benchmarking tool for organisations to foster LGBTQ+ inclusivity in their workplaces and address the significant challenge of upholding inclusive values on a global scale. 

Andrew Murphy, Partner, on behalf of Executive Sponsors of LGBTQ+ inclusion comments: “We are very pleased at achieving the gold award in this year’s Global Workplace Equality Index and being recognised alongside other prestigious employers across several sectors. We are committed to being an employer of choice for LGBTQ+ people and for all our colleagues to maintain a workplace that values authenticity and self-expression, one that fosters innovation and creative thinking by individuals, which in turn promotes better job satisfaction and engagement. This benefits us all.” 

Helen Ouseley, Global Head of Diversity, Inclusion & Wellbeing, said: “We are immensely proud of this recognition of our commitment to LGBTQ+ inclusion. The award reflects the efforts of Freshfields colleagues everywhere to create an inclusive work environment where all can belong, engage and excel. As a global firm, we have the platform and opportunity to collaborate with our clients, suppliers and other companies that we work with around the world to make a substantial positive impact for LGBTQ+ inclusion.”  

Freshfields has embedded ‘access to justice and access to opportunity’ as part of its Responsible Business strategy, and within its many pro bono commitments the LGBTQ+ community is one of six priority groups.  

Prioritising building a welcoming, positive and supportive environment was reflected in a number of ways the past year.  

  • Our new global Executive Sponsors for LGBTQ+ inclusion shared their personal journeys and held an interactive session with Halo members to share what they hoped to bring to their role in driving change across the firm.
  • Tokyo and Hong Kong are partnering with Out Leadership in their Asia Summit (taking place this week), in events to explore the progress made in Asia and to inspire and empower LGBTQ+ emerging leaders. 
  • We ran a webinar in collaboration with We Create Space, in which panellists shared their personal experiences around intersectional identities.
  • We were thrilled to host a private screening of CURED, an award-winning documentary that highlights a pivotal but little-known moment in LGBTQ+ history when US activists rose up to challenge a formidable institution - and won a crucial victory in the modern movement for LGBTQ+ equality.
  • In celebration of Pride 2023, we are delighted to have hosted a number of virtual activities and events, in collaboration with Halo, to mark the month.

Jessica Harris speaks on behalf of the Global Halo committee: “Global Halo and Global Halo Champions, Freshfields’ employee networks for LGBTQ+ colleagues and allies respectively, join our colleagues to celebrate the firm being awarded the GOLD by Stonewall. We are immensely proud of this recognition and it is a culmination of the long collaboration and support from the firm’s leadership as well as our colleagues at large. We have seen the firm’s commitment to inclusion in the support that our networks have received when hosting training sessions, educating our colleagues about various awareness days and speaking about the state of LGBTQ+ rights globally. Despite the broad coverage of countries and jurisdictions around the world and the differing pace of change, the firm has been steadfast in ensuring that LGBTQ+ inclusion is central to  its Diversity and Inclusion strategy and that our efforts, including pro bono legal work, extends to advocacy work for LGBTQ+ rights in our communities. The firm’s leadership have always valued our advice and efforts to support our community and this speaks to our culture of inclusion at Freshfields.” 

Further info on Freshfields’ recently published D&I Annual Review 2023 can be found here