Co-Chair
Ueli Sommer

Diversity and Equality Law Committee

The Diversity and Equality Law Committee comprises private practitioners, in-house attorneys and academics, many of whom work with corporate clients in order to help them fulfil their key goals in such areas as pay equity, prevention of discrimination based on gender, race, religion, age, and disability (among other protected traits), and LGBTQ issues.

About the Committee

The Diversity and Equality Law Committee comprises private practitioners, in-house attorneys and academics, many of whom work with corporate clients in order to help them fulfil their key goals in such areas as pay equity, prevention of discrimination based on gender, race, religion, age, and disability (among other protected traits), and LGBTQ issues.

Many of these professionals are members of leading law firms or corporations. Of course, we welcome members from all areas and with all perspectives.

The Committee publishes annually the Diversity and Equality Law Committee Newsletter, which gives members an opportunity to bring attention to new developments in their jurisdictions, and other issues of interest.

The Committee also comprises the Disability Rights Working Group, whose members are interested in issues facing disabled individuals and their rights in the working world.

The Committee has been fortunate to enjoy very active support from its officers as well as invaluable input from other committees. It is a sign of the Committee's growing strength that increasingly we are asked to co-sponsor sessions with other IBA committees.

The officers are always keen to encourage others to join in the work so if you would like to contribute an article or suggest a topic for future conferences then please contact any of the officers. E-mail is our preferred means of communication.

We work closely with our colleagues in the other three bodies making up the Human Resources Section: the Employment and Industrial Relations Law Committee, the Immigration and Nationality Law Committee, and the Global Employment Institute. The Human Resources Section Board was established in 2014 in order to coordinate activities and join efforts within the Section. Board members consist of the current and immediate past Chairs of each of the committees in the Section.

Forthcoming conferences and webinars View All Conferences

India’s new law on the protection of rights of transgender persons

With the recognition of ‘transgender’ as the ‘third gender’, the Supreme Court of India laid down the foundation for the recognition of rights of transgender persons in India in 2014. Through the recently enacted Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Act 2019, these rights have now been enshrined into a much-awaited legal framework. The article analyses the key features of the law, the hits and misses and the impact on employers, especially in the private sector.

Equalisation of rights for adoption and surrogacy

This article aims to analyse the lack of Argentine labour legislation and the current approaches due to doctrine, jurisprudence and employers’ practice for leaves of absence in the events of adoption and surrogacy, focusing also on the situation of non-pregnant female employees and the case of equal marriages or partners.

From the Co-Chairs, Diversity and Equality Law Committee, November 2020

A message from the Co-Chairs of the Diversity and Equality Law Committee, October 2020.

Supreme Court of Canada upholds genetic non-discrimination law

This article looks at the Genetic Non-Discrimination Act, which was passed in 2017, and ruled as constitutional in July 2020 by the Supreme Court of Canada. However, the Act may have potential widespread effects on technology and privacy laws in the future.

Gender gap in Italy: equality is still a mirage

The article aims to analyse the current state of gender inequality in Italy, starting with the recent ‘warning’ issued by the European Committee of Social Rights, moving on to Italian case law on the subject and, finally, looking at the emergency regulation introduced by the Italian Government as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak.

Subcommittees and other groups

The Diversity and Equality Law Committee also coordinates the activities of the following subcommittees/working groups.

  • Disability Rights Working Group