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TUC: Law firms should be flexible

12 Jun 2008

TUC: Law firms should be flexible The legal profession will deprive itself of talented workers unless it offers flexible working patterns to women, one expert has said.

According to the Trade Union Congress (TUC), law firms need to accommodate the needs of female staff who have to "juggle home responsibilities" with those at work.

Law students who have their own children working in the industry on placements could be interested to hear the sector is being urged to consider offering flexible work practices to employees such as themselves.

Sarah Veal, head of the TUC's equality and employment rights, said the pay gap can be broken down into two things and though gender segregation does not apply in the profession, the culture of not taking into account contributory factors that apply to working women does.

"The legal profession is eventually going to rob itself of a lot of talent if it doesn't accommodate people who need to work rather differently to the old-fashioned nine to five ways that we all got used to," she added.

According to a report released earlier in the year by the Law Society, the average male solicitor earns nearly one third more than his female counterpart.

The National Statistics report in April found that women could lose out on earnings of £330,000 over a lifetime compared to men.

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