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Kanarys, Inc., a diversity, equity, and inclusion and belonging (DEIB) technology company focused on creating long-term systemic change around those principles and the Women’s Lawyers Division (WLD) of the National Bar Association, announced the result of the State of Black Women in the Law DEIB Assessment Report.

The report was sponsored by the National Bar Institute. The goal of the report is to illuminate and pinpoint specific challenges of Black women attorneys on a broader scale and identify solutions for addressing those challenges.

The assessment, which polled members of the National Bar Association, WLD and other affiliated groups, revealed that although strides have been made, more work remains for Black women to reach equity and parity in the legal profession. Key takeaways from the survey are:

  • Nearly 1 in 2 participants have been tasked with educating others about DEIB (47%) even though they do not formally have a DEIB role.
  • Seven in 10 participants reported experiencing or witnessing discrimination or boas (70%), adding to the emotional burden they often carry.
  • While the majority agreed their workplaces are committed to improving diversity, nearly 70% would not remain at their current organization for two more years with a lower-than-average sense of belonging.
  • Nearly 7 in 10 Black women lawyers and professionals have a positive outlook when it comes to expressing their opinions on the job.
  • There is still a fear of reporting DEIB issues to an immediate manager and Human Resources, in addition to being silenced and dismissed, with 14% of participants saying they fear relaying DEIB issues.

“Before I co-founded Kanarys, I practiced law as a private equity attorney for over 12 years, and it was the inequities I faced as a Black woman in the law that motivated me to dedicate my life to creating systemic change within DEIB,” said Mandy Prince, co-founder and CEO of Kanarys. 

“While this report revealed great progress, the results also show that there is still much work to be done,” Prince added. “We hope the findings will accelerate progress within the legal industry and beyond and foster an inclusive and equitable culture for Black women.”

James Wright Jr. is the D.C. political reporter for the Washington Informer Newspaper. He has worked for the Washington AFRO-American Newspaper as a reporter, city editor and freelance writer and The Washington...

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