In 2017, Lerners conducted a firm wide survey, asking lawyers and staff to evaluate the firm’s current diversity and inclusion programs and policies, and to provide recommendations for improvement. As a result, in addition to our current and ongoing initiatives, Lerners has now undertaken further initiatives to implement recommendations for improvement, with a view to ultimately making our workplace better.
Diversity and Inclusion Policies/Programs
- Anti-discrimination and Prevention of Workplace Violence and Harassment: Lerners LLP is committed to providing a safe and healthy work environment in which all persons are treated equally, and with respect, decency and dignity. Because every person has the right to work in a professional atmosphere that promotes equal opportunities and prohibits discriminatory practices, the firm does not tolerate any form of discrimination, violence or harassment and will take all reasonable steps to prevent and eliminate conduct that falls within the scope. The firm will not tolerate, condone or allow discrimination, violence or harassment by fellow employees, managers, associates or partners. The firm encourages reporting of all incidents of discrimination, violence and harassment regardless of who the offender may be.
- Accessibility for Persons with Disabilities: Lerners has developed and implemented a policy outlining the firm’s strategies to prevent and remove barriers from its workplace in order to improve employment opportunities for firm members with disabilities in accordance with the Accessibility for Ontarians With Disabilities Act, 2005 (AODA) and Integrated Accessibility Standards, Ontario Regulation 191/11. Lerners is committed to providing a work environment whereby all firm members are treated with dignity, independence, integrity, integration and receive equal opportunities and accommodation where required.
- Pregnancy and Parental Leaves: Under its pregnancy/parental leave policy, the firm supplements the income of eligible lawyers, beyond Employment Insurance leave benefits, during their pregnancy/parental leave. The firm provides pregnancy/parental leaves, without pay, in accordance with the Employment Standards Act for all eligible staff members.
- Education and Training: The firm covers reasonable continuing professional development expenses and offers in-house Continuing Professional Development seminars for lawyers. Legal and administrative staff are eligible for reimbursement of continuing education programs upon successful completion of an approved program.
- Flexible Work Arrangements: The firm provides the opportunity for flexible work arrangements, on an as needed basis, to help lawyers and staff meet personal needs such as child/family member care, and personal health. These arrangements are implemented with the goal of balancing the interests of the lawyer or staff member, with the needs of the firm and its clients. The arrangement can include reduced-hours schedules, extended leave, ramp-up schedules/facilitated return to work, and full and part-time flexible work arrangements