We are determined to do better, and with your help, I am sure we will do so.
Like leadership groups within many organisations, over the past few weeks, we have been involved in several conversations about racism and the events which have been amplified by the senseless killing of George Floyd.
These have often been difficult and uncomfortable conversations.
We didn’t recognise that racism or Black Lives Matter was an issue for us. This was a mistake and inconsistent with living our firm’s values.
Through these conversations, we have come to better understand the incidents and forms of racism that continue to negatively impact our colleagues in profound and hurtful ways and to empathise with them.
We have come to better understand why the events of the past few weeks have been a watershed.
We have also learnt that silence at this moment could be misinterpreted as our organisation tolerating rather than rejecting racism.
Whilst we cannot fully understand what has been endured by our colleagues and by so many others, we must do everything we can to educate ourselves, to listen more, to create safe places, to more pro-actively care and also to do what we can to call out unacceptable behaviour and support our minority communities moving forward.
We are determined to lead a firm that cares and supports all our colleagues, where everyone lives our values. A firm that is more aware of how racism, however subtle, impacts people daily. A firm that does better, through our policies, approaches and education to have a ‘zero tolerance’ approach to racism. A firm that is more diverse and reflective of the communities we serve.
We are committed to taking concrete steps to improve and to work with and be held accountable by our colleagues as we do so.
Stowe Family Law Executive Team: Ken Fowlie, Julian Hawkhead, Louise Walker, Morna Bunce, Tor Burns and Rachel Roberts