Links ditches freebies to raise literacy in Hackney

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  • "Raise their employability" but not to the point of Links ever recruiting them.

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  • This is a very commendable step. Law firms in the US have long been showing the way to do effective pro bono work and to contributre to the communities in which they work.

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  • I think this is a really positive thing Linklaters have done and hope that more firms choose to do the same thing again.

    Do students really need freebies? Hopefully they'd be applying for firms based on the merits of the firm and not the freebies. Hopefully...

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  • That's a misquote if ever I saw one, IHateBPP. It says "develop the employability and raise the aspirations of students across the borough". I hope you don't work for Linklaters. I doubt it.

    But what irks me is that people like you (perhaps you weren't able to get a TC there?) think that a successful business like Linklaters, or any of its MC peers, can still be world-class whilst supposedly ignoring clever, "non-posh" people from Hackney, or anywhere not populated by wealthy upper-class aristos. Here's a reality-check - they can't. Anyone who claims the MC firms don't hire from less affluent backgrounds are, quite simply, ignorant or jealous. I, and many of my fellow MC lawyers, come from and were raised in places running the gamut of (from a quick straw poll) Rochdale, Brixton, Hounslow, Tower Hamlets and indeed Hackney, as well as the Home Counties, Westminster, Alderley Edge, Bath, Holland Park, Harrogate, Zurich, Bethesda, Palm Beach, Victoria Peak ... And you know what? No-one (except me, clearly) asks where you were raised.

    What clearly does matter is that you are well-educated, and no-one denies that it is hard to get the requisite education and opportunities in certain areas - but I think we all know that that is not the fault of Linklaters or CC. Why should they employ someone who isn't good enough? It's harsh, but it applies equally to many of the dim-witted offspring of the wealthy. If you're not good enough, then an organisation like an MC firm cannot afford to keep you on - and I also note the howls of protest that rang out when deadwood was made redundant earlier this year. If the old-boys' network was a real factor, then surely all the braying poshos would have been kept in their jobs? But they weren't.

    The MC firms are, in my experience, diverse places: but clearly educationally-elitist. And I'm pretty sure anyone would want their lawyer to be both intelligent and well-educated. The problem that faces the young of Hackney is the opportunity to obtain a more appropriate educational experience (one that matches and broadens their aspirations) than is currently on offer: and whilst it is the State that is failing the borough, it is both lazy and jejune to take potshots at private enterprises which are trying to alleviate the problem.

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