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City Law firms partner with Rt Hon Justine Greening to play their role in the COVID-19 national recovery

Published on 16 February 2021

Former Education Secretary Justine Greening is working with City of London Law Society (CLLS) member firms to protect opportunities and boost social mobility.

The partnership between Justine Greening and 15 CLLS members will include the development of an Opportunity Action Plan to level up Britain in the wake of COVID-19.

It will also see the firms working closely with a number of universities, including Bradford, Lincoln, York St John, Greenwich and Staffordshire to create new and wider pathways from higher education into the legal sector.

The plan will share the firms’ work to level up opportunities with its members and their local communities. The plan will also set out how firms plan to go further and play a leading role in Britain’s national recovery from COVID-19, opening up greater access to careers in the legal sector to people from a diverse range of backgrounds.

Rotherham-born Ms Greening herself benefited from social mobility, becoming the first Secretary of State for Education to have gone to a comprehensive school and local FE college.

She co-founded the national Social Mobility Pledge in 2018 alongside UK entrepreneur and philanthropist, David Harrison, to tackle Britain’s widespread lack of social mobility.

By signing the Pledge, businesses and universities commit to enhancing opportunities by working with local schools; offering training and apprenticeships; and by adopting fair recruitment policies.

More than 500 organisations representing over seven million people have signed the Social Mobility Pledge. This includes over 60 universities with more than two million students represented.

Justine Greening said: “Many young people are seeing their life prospects drastically downgraded, with jobs and job offers disappearing. Meanwhile, massive demand for reskilling and career shifting support is building up.

“Well defined purpose together with a strong culture and leadership have marked out those organisations which have taken the right decisions in response to the crisis, from those which have not. The challenge now, and one that CLLS member firms have stepped up to, is for Britain’s businesses and universities to play their role in boosting opportunity and social mobility as part of our national recovery.

“I’m looking forward to working with CLLS members on their Opportunity Action Plan. They are committed to making a difference and levelling up Britain. I hope many others will follow their example."