On May 25, we watched in horror the appalling murder of George Floyd. His death, and those of too many others, have belatedly awakened the collective consciousness of the country and the entire world as to a fundamental human rights issue that has unfortunately not been taken head-on: racism is not a thing of the past, but remains prevalent today; and we as a society have failed to ensure its eradication. In sum, we have failed to meaningfully work towards Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King’s “Dream” that each individual be measured by the content of their character and not the color of their skin.
For the past couple of weeks, we have mourned, consoled, listened, empathized, coalesced, and tried to understand. But in order for those sincere expressions of support to have ultimate meaning, they must be transformed into, and backed by, resolute action. To that end, Gordon Rees Scully Mansukhani conveys the following.
- We stand together to pledge our universal affirmance that Black Lives Matter.
- We uniformly and unequivocally condemn and decry racism, bigotry, and racial injustice of all forms in the strongest imaginable terms, and are committed to their permanent eradication.
- We are devoted to maintaining and fostering a professional environment where inclusiveness, acceptance, diversity, and magnanimity are upheld as our most preeminent and central cultural values.
- We are committed to ensuring the safety and protection of our employees from threats or harms of any manner stemming from racial animus, hostility, or enmity.
- We will continue to train and educate our workforce to raise awareness regarding biases and prejudices, and will strive to improve the ways in which we interact with and treat others.
- We will, despite any awkwardness or discomfort, openly, candidly, and constructively discuss issues of race and seek better ways to appreciate the perspectives of all who have been affected by past societal wrongs.
- We will steadfastly and vigorously support our Black community through the firm’s Diversity Committee, Affinity Groups, and at all levels of management, as we do all our diverse colleagues of color and traditionally underrepresented groups.
- We will provide financial support to worthy causes and organizations whose mission it is to support fairness, civil justice, and to eradicate racism.
- We will endeavor to continue broadening the diversity of our attorneys and staff through successful recruitment, retention, and promotion to positions of leadership and ownership.
- We shall remain devoted to ensuring that the life of George Floyd, and the far too many unfortunate others, were not taken in vain.
- We commit ourselves to a mission of achieving Dr. King’s Dream.
Gordon & Rees is most proud of its track record and accomplishments garnered in the advancement of diversity in the legal profession, including being named a Top 50 U.S. firm on the American Lawyer Diversity Scorecard, achieving a perfect score in the Corporate Equality Index for five consecutive years, and being named among the Best Law Firms for Minority Attorneys per Law360. Yet, there remains much work ahead as only focused, concerted and continued activity will bring about lasting and beneficial change. We greatly look forward to working positively with our outstanding community of more than 1,500 teammates across the country on these issues of fundamental and crucial importance.
Dion Cominos, Firmwide Managing Partner
Laura De Santos, Co-Chair Diversity Committee
Franz Hardy, Co-Chair Diversity Committee
Leslie Eason, Co-Chair African American Affinity Group
Andrea Cook, Co-Chair African American Affinity Group