The Advocates’ Society
Conducting a Demographic Survey of Members, 2017-2018
In Spring of 2018, Anima Leadership worked with The Advocates’ Society to conduct a demographic survey of their over 6000 members across Canada. The survey results provided the Society with insights into how it could develop and implement activities and initiatives to ensure an inclusive organization and a membership that reflects the broadest spectrum of the legal profession in Canada.
The Law Society of Ontario (LSO, formerly the Law Society of Upper Canada) released a report entitled, Working Together for Change: Strategies to Address Issues of Systemic Racism in the Legal Professions. Among the thirteen LSO recommendations was the need for legal organizations to collect demographic data in order to address issues of diversity and inclusion. Based on this, TAS struck its own Diversity Task Force to provide guidance and direction to promote equity, diversity and inclusiveness within the organization.
The survey was a proactive initiative to fill a gap at TAS by gathering information and raising awareness about the composition of the Society’s membership. It assisted the Society to get a sense of the community; identify strengths and barriers to equity and inclusion; develop and implement plans as well as supports in order to identify unconscious biases in organizational policies, processes and procedures; and, to promote fairness in decision-making. The survey provided the Society with insights into how it can develop and implement activities and initiatives to ensure an inclusive organization and a diverse membership that reflects the broadest spectrum of the legal profession in Canada.