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Allison Arthur-Young – Diversity Champion of the Year Finalist

Home Insights Allison Arthur-Young – Diversity Champion of the Year Finalist

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Published on: June 08, 2023


Russell McVeagh Partner and Board Chair Allison Arthur-Young has been named a finalist for the 'Diversity Champion' award ahead of the 2023 Diversity Awards NZTM for her mahi to advance a culture of belonging. The Awards, taking place in August, celebrate excellence in workplace diversity and inclusion and the Diversity Champion award recognises individuals who expertly use their knowledge, skills, experience and emotional intelligence to build an environment of belonging for others.
"I am honoured to be named a finalist alongside an outstanding group of organisations and individuals who are making a positive impact on the people and workplace culture of organisations throughout Aotearoa New Zealand," said Allison Arthur-Young.

"We are really proud of the progress we have made so far, but are always mindful there is more to do".

Allison is driving a more inclusive and diverse working environment at Russell McVeagh, and in the wider legal profession, having played a pivotal role in Russell McVeagh's refreshed D&I and culture strategies.
Allison openly demonstrates a deep care for people and leads with empathy. She led Russell McVeagh's response in providing support to communities and staff during and in the aftermath of the devastating Cyclone Gabrielle and Auckland Floods. This included pro bono support; monetary support to affected communities; and providing staff with leave to help with clean up and an additional leave day to support staff reconnect and spend time with whānau.
Known for her 'big picture' outlook, she is dedicated to providing the best possible experience for Russell McVeagh's people and ensuring culture is at the heart of the firm's strategic priorities and business plans. Over the last two years, led by Allison, the Board and partners completed a refresh of the firm's 5-year Diversity & Inclusion Strategy, developed a significant D&I work programme, and committed to 3 D&I goals:

  • Gender – a partnership with at least 40% women.

  • Ethnicity – a workforce with at least 30% ethnically diverse people.

  • Inclusion – an environment where people feel they belong and can thrive (>80%).

Recent highlights from the refreshed D&I work programme include:

  • Pay Equity monitoring and reporting – Russell McVeagh signed up to MindtheGap in 2022, NZ's public monitoring and reporting registry of gender and ethnicity pay gaps;

  • Provided an 'out of cycle' pay increase for all staff due to the rising cost of living in 2022;

  • A refreshed Parental Leave Policy, providing increased support for parents;

  • Continuation of flexible working across the firm and provision of a work from home allowance; and

  • Gained Advanced status Gender Tick accreditation in 2023.

Russell McVeagh's recent staff engagement 'Pulse Survey', for which feedback is provided anonymously, showed that Russell McVeagh's people think the firm is a great place to work and that they are proud to work at the firm, of which Allison is tremendously proud.
The Award winners are due to be announced at a ceremony in Auckland on 30 August. Read more about the Awards and other finalists here.

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