Fitzsimons Redmond LLP is delighted to have been named as Diversity and Inclusion Law Firm of the Year at the Irish Law Awards 2024. John and Caroline attended the ceremony at the Convention Centre to receive our beautiful trophy.

Fitzsimons Redmond LLP is committed to diversity and inclusion in its practices. It was a founding signatory of the Law Society’s Gender Equality Diversity and Inclusion Charter, and because wellbeing and work-life balance is key to ensuring true inclusion, it was also an initial signatory to the Law Society’s Professional Wellbeing Charter. It is a signatory to the Equal Representation in Arbitration Pledge, and the Bar of Ireland’s Equitable Briefing charter.

Inclusion is central to all our decision-making, at all levels in our dealings with clients and colleagues as well as in our own running of a business.

To demonstrate our commitment to inclusion, we introduced a four-day work week. Everyone in the firm works four days to allow more time spent caring for families, to allow a step down toward retirement, to allow recharging for those with health challenges, or to allow time for other commitments or education. The four-day week applies to everyone in the firm. Everyone receives the pay for a 5 day week but works for 4 days. We implemented lean procedures, and have increased productivity due to our recognition that people have lives and challenges outside of work. We have also improved our productivity and remained as competitive for our clients. Over the past few years of being a four-day week firm, our clients have reported greater satisfaction!

We also have certain members of our team who work from home most days as suits them best. We make sure that everyone is set up to work in a way that suits their own needs and well-being.

We allow for study leave. We close our office at 5.30pm (except in the rarest of cases. If a team member were to consistently seek to work late, we have a policy to re-assess their workload and provide support. We are an equal team and everyone helps each-other. It is not unusual to see the partners making booklets, or making the tea.

Our employment law team works with our clients to build equitable, inclusive and diverse workplaces. We guide clients if they elect to trial a four-day week and through other policies that make the working world a more level playing field for everyone.

Our team is committed to ensuring equality and inclusion in the wider community. We regularly take discrimination cases and otherwise advocate for clients. We publish on issues of equality, diversity and inclusion. Partner, Lisa Quinn O’Flaherty has contributed a chapter to a published book called Women in Law; Discovering the True Meaning of Success (Ed: Angela Han, Ramses House, 2022), which shared the experiences of women lawyers globally- and raised funds for a charity supporting underrepresented aspiring female lawyers. Lisa has also written on the law around neurodiversity in Education, publishing a chapter in Parenting Gifted Children in Different Countries, (Ed. Roya Klingner, Eliva Press, June 2022), and an article on the topic in the Education Matters, Ireland’s Education Yearbook (2022). The firm currently works with a mental health charity as pro bono legal counsel.

Fitzsimons Redmond LLP provides internships to marginalised individuals and young people underrepresented in the legal professions. It works informally with the Society of St Vincent de Paul to give internships and mentoring to young people with an interest in the law. Our internships are flexible around the intern’s study and work commitments, and we make sure the intern is sufficiently mentored. When hiring recently, we gave early notice of the vacancy to all our former interns to allow them to apply first.

Fitzsimons Redmond LLP is a firm that lives its commitment to Diversity and Inclusion, and we are very proud that our commitment has been recognised by this award. We hope we can inspire others to build inclusive practices into their work.