WILMINGTON, Del.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, Citizens for a Pro-Business Delaware, a grassroots advocacy group, announced the latest in its series of print ads denouncing Skadden Arps for declaring Juneteenth a firm-wide holiday while continuing to resist real measures to improve diversity and inclusion at the firm.
The Dover Post ad pulls from a statement made by civil rights activist Reverend Al Sharpton on Skadden Arps’ decision which reads, in part, “Juneteenth is a celebration of the emancipation of enslaved Black Americans and the history of oppressed people in this country. Skadden needs to commit to enacting reforms that increase the representation of Black Americans in the workforce not just give their white employees a three-day weekend.”
The ad also exposes the fact that only one of Skadden’s 67 attorneys in Wilmington is Black, while the city of Wilmington as a whole is 58% Black, and calls for the firm to make tangible steps towards improving its diversity statistics.
Said Citizens for a Pro-Business Delaware Campaign (CPBD) Manager Chris Coffey, "When we say we are serious about calling out injustice when we see it, we mean it. Skadden Arps’ continued virtue-signaling around issues of race without any meaningful measures to improve their own dismal diversity numbers is disgraceful.
“The hiring decisions that firms like Skadden Arps make now have a direct link to the future composition of our courts. How can we possibly expect those courts to accurately reflect the racial, ethnic, gender, and socioeconomic diversity of Delaware’s communities if diverse individuals never have an opportunity to gain the relevant experiences?
“We applaud Reverend Sharpton’s leadership on the issue of legal diversity and are proud to stand alongside him in calling for an end to the failed status quo. It’s time for Skadden and Delaware’s legal industry to reckon with its historical exclusion of people of color at the expense of justice.”