Ashurst introduces domestic violence policy

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Ashurst introduces domestic violence policy
Australian staff at Ashurst will now receive additional support from the firm if they are the victim of domestic or family violence.

The new Domestic and Family Violence Policy offers an additional five days of paid leave if they or close family members are the victim of domestic or family violence. The time is for medical, legal or counselling appointments.

"We are committed to this policy, similar to that adopted by many of many of our clients, and to lead by example in the wider business community,” commented Ashurst regional head Australia, Phil Breden. “It is essential that those impacted by domestic and family violence have a safe and confidential environment to seek support and this is a proactive step for us to take in responding to this community problem." 

The policy is expected to have a positive influence on the business including improvement of the mental health and wellbeing of staff.
More action required to tackle legal profession pay gap
The pay gap between male and female lawyers will require more than the incremental changes seen so far.

That’s the view of a new research paper by the University of Denver’s law and sociology schools, which concludes that simply addressing individual biases is not enough; law firms must make structural changes.

“Altering the reward structure to make it consistent with actual performance and contribution could lead to better morale among lawyers and lower turnover rates, and could begin to dismantle the remaining features of implicit gender bias in the practice of law,” the research recommends.
British Legal Awards winners announced
Herbert Smith Freehills was one of the big winners at the British Legal Awards last week.

The firm was recognized for its strengths in banking and finance, client relationships and energy and infrastructure at the gala awards ceremony in London, organized by UK industry publication Legal Week.

Pinsent Masons was awarded Law Firm of the Year while the innovation award went to Hogan Lovells, the award for best use of technology went to Reed Smith and Travers Smith was recognised for diversity.

Team winners included Linklaters (large M&A deal), Baker & McKenzie (private equity), Norton Rose Fulbright (property) and Clifford Chance (litigation, disputes).