Ko ngā rōia tuākana i whakatairangatia i tētahi hui “Pizza & Partners” i te Paraire, te 17 o Māehe, ki ngā ākonga ture o Waipapa Taumata Rau. / The senior lawyers advertised on a “Pizza & Partners” networking panel on Friday, March 17 for law students at The University of Auckland.
By Mildred Armah and Taurapa
Kua whakapāha tētahi rōpū nō Waipapa Taumata Rau nā tā rātou whakatairanga i tētahi hui kimi tāngata ki ngā ākonga ture, e tae rā anō ana ki tētahi ope kua tomo katoa i ngā tāne Pākehā.
An Auckland University student group has apologised after promoting a recruitment event to law students with a panel of experts consisting exclusively of Pākehā men.
He mea whakarite te ope e Te Pāpori Ākonga Ture ki Waipapa Taumata Rau (Auckland University Law Student’s Society – AULSS), ā, i whakatairangatia hei wāhi o tētahi terenga kimi tāngata i tapaina ko ‘Pizza & Partners’.
The panel was organised by the Auckland University Law Student’s Society (AULSS) and advertised as part of a recruitment series called ‘Pizza & Partners’.
I rāhiritia ngā ākonga kia tae atu, whakarongo atu ai ki ngā kaihautū e rima nō ngā tino pakihi ture – karekau he wāhine, me te aha anō, i kiritahi.
Students were invited to attend and hear from five leading law firm partners – none of whom were women or people of colour.
Tērā te tumu o te Auckland Women Lawyers’ Association Anoushka Bloem i kī mai kua “matangurunguru” i tā te rōpū ākonga whakatairanga i tētahi ope rōia tē whakakanohitia nei ngā ākonga ture katoa, me te pāpori whānui.
President of the Auckland Women Lawyers’ Association Anoushka Bloem said it was “disappointing” the student organisation put forward a panel of lawyers not representative of law pupils and society as a whole.
Hei tāna, ki tā te ākonga titiro, ki te kore e kite i ngā tāngata “e pēnā ana i a rātou” ki ngā tūranga matua, e kore e tinga ana ka koke atu ki ngā ara umanga pēnā.
She said from a student’s perspective, if they cannot see people “like them” in senior positions, it is less likely they will pursue these career options.
“[Nā konā], e hirahira ana kia whakaehu te hanga o rātou ka tae atu ki te ahumahi nei,” te kī a Anoushka.
“[Therefore] it is incumbent to ensure those that enter the profession come from a diverse range of backgrounds,” Bloem said.
E ai ki Te Kāhui Ture o Aotearoa, koni atu i te 70% ngā whakapōtaetanga ture, koni atu hoki i te haurua o te hunga mahi ā-ture he wāhine.
According to the New Zealand Law Society, over 70% of law graduates and just over half of the legal profession here is female.
Heoti, ahakoa kua koni atu ngā wāhine i te haurua ngā roia e mahi ana ki ngā tari ture, kua hautoru anake ngā tumu o aua pakihi he wāhine.
Yet, while more than half of the lawyers who work in law firms are women, they make up only a third of partners or directors in those firms.
Hei tā Anoushka, he whaiwāhitanga papai ngā hui tūhonohono e tautoko pai ai te whakaehu me te korenga o te tōkeke ā-ira i te ahumahi ture.
Bloem said university networking events are a unique opportunity to proactively help with diversity and gender inequality in the law profession.
“E ohorere ana i te whakaritea o tēnei hui nā runga anō i tā rātou i mahi ai tē whakaaro kē o rātou ki te kanorau. E manako ana mātou ka whai hua i tēnei akoranga haere ake nei, ka hua ake pea te panonitanga ā-pūnaha,” hei tāna.
“It is surprising this panel event was organised with such a glaring lack of diversity. We are hopeful this is a valuable lesson going forward, and it will be a catalyst for systemic change,” she said.
E ai ki te tumu o Te Kaunihera Wāhine o Aotearoa Suzanne Manning, ko tā te ope nā he whakatairanga i “tētahi tukutuku tāne o mua”.
National Council of Women New Zealand president Suzanne Manning said the panel portrayed an “old boys network”.
“Me whakanui ia ope, ia hui, ia kaupapa toronga a ngā kaimahi ngaio o te ahumahi i te kanorau o te kaimahi, me tautoko, me tautoko hoki i te whakaehu o ngā kaitono,” tāna i kī mai.
“Every panel, every event and outreach by industry professionals should showcase staff diversity to support and encourage diversity of applicants,” she said.
I tētahi whakapāha i tuku ki ngā mema o AULSS i riro i a Puna, kua “whai whakaaro [te rōpū ākonga] ki ngā tākupu me ngā āwangawanga, nā whai anō kua anga kē atu ki tā mātou e taea nei i te raro pōtehetehe ki a mātou e panonitia ai te ope”.
In an apology sent to AULSS members obtained by Stuff, the student organisation said it had “reflected on comments and concerns, and have acted on them as much as we can in the given timeframe to make changes to the panel”.
“Kāore e ārikarika ngā whakapāha o mātou, ka mutu e āwhitu ana, he kore nō mātou i whai whakaaro ki te raru o te kanorau, e mōhio ana hoki mātou tē rangona ngā reo katoa o tō tātou kāhui ākonga, me tō tātou pūnaha ture i te ope hōu, engari e ū ana mātou kia okea ururoatia haere ake nei.”
“We sincerely apologise and deeply regret our oversight on the issue of diversity, we acknowledge the new panel still does not represent the many different voices within our student body and our legal system, but we are committed to making this our utmost priority going forward.”
I tētahi īmēra ki a Puna, i kī mai te tumu o AULSS Kevin Guo: “E toru ngā ope hei wāhi o te terenga kimi tāngata a te pāpori, ko te nuinga he whenumitanga ā-ira, ā-mātāwaka hoki. Ko te ope kaihautū te hua o te kino o ngā kōrerorero a mātou mō ngā manako me ngā pūmanawa o ngā ākonga, tae rā anō ki te whakatairanga o tētahi hui e haukume mārika nei.
In an email to Stuff, AULSS president Kevin Guo said: “Three panels were run as part of the society’s recruitment series, which were in the main part a mix of genders and ethnicities. The partners’ panel was an unfortunate result of inadequate communication from us regarding the interests of the students, resulting in the advertised event with a decided bias.
“Anō tō mātou matangurunguru i a mātou anō, ā, ka tiro whānui mātou ki tēnei hua, ka kite i te ngoikore o te kanorau i tōna hanga. Ka kotahi atu ai mātou ki ngā pakihi o te hui kia panonihia te hui i te pō Paraire.”
“We were very disappointed with ourselves when we stood back and looked at this event and realised the lack of diversity in its make-up. We immediately reached out to the involved firms to change the panel on Friday evening.”
Hei tā Kevin, i tae rā anō ngā kanohi hōu o te ope kaihautū ki ngā tāne e toru me ngā wāhine e rua.
Guo said final membership of the panel consisted of three male and two female partners.
“Me he kaiwhakarite kaupapa mātou, i hinga i te korenga o mātou i whakapuaki i ngā manako o ngā ākonga kia kitea tētahi ope kanorau, nā whai anō kua rahua tā mātou whakatū i tētahi hui e tae rā anō ki tō mātou kāhui ākonga.
“We acknowledge as event organisers, we failed to communicate the interests of our students to see a diverse panel, and we have failed to create an event that would be inclusive for our student population.
“Nā tēnei mātou i ako, ā, kua ū te pāpori ki te okenga ururoatanga hei te ākengokengo.”
“We have learned through this and as a society commit to doing better in future.”
I whakapā atu a Puna ki ngā rōia e rima i mātua whaiwāhi atu ki te ope.
Stuff contacted the five lawyers who were originally advertised as part of the panel.
Hei tā David Broadmore nō Buddle Findlay, e “matangurunguru” ana i te korenga o te ope whakakanohi i ngā ākonga e manakotia nei ka kimihia e tōna pakihi.
David Broadmore of Buddle Findlay said it was “disappointing” the panel was not representative of the students his firm hopes to recruit.
Tērā a Tess Hodson nō Bell Gully, i urupare ki a Puna hei māngai mō Blair Keown, i mea mai kua matangurunguru hoki tōna pakihi i te mōhio kīhai te hanga o te ope i whakakanohi i te kanorau o Bell Gully, o te ahumahi whānui rānei.
Bell Gully’s Tess Hodson, who responded to Stuff on behalf of Blair Keown, said its firm was also disappointed to discover the composition of the panel did not reflect Bell Gully’s or the professions' diversity.
“Motika atu rā tā mātou whakarite i tō mātou kaihautū wahine hōu kia noho atu ki te ope,” hei ko tāna.
“We immediately arranged for one of our recently promoted female partners to join the panel,” she said.
E ai ki a Nick Frith nō MinterEllisonRuddWatts: “I ohorere mātou i te ope, he kore nō mātou i whakapae kua hāngai ki te kanorau o te ahumahi.
Nick Frith of MinterEllisonRuddWatts said: “We were surprised about the panel because we didn't think it reflected the diversity of the industry.
“I te whakaatu mai ki a mātou, kua oti i a mātou te urupare, nā whai anō kua oti i tētahi o ō mātou hoa whakawhiwhi mahi te tae atu, whakatūturu ai i te kanorau ā-ira ki te hanganga o te ope.”
“When it was bought to our attention we were able to respond and one of our fellow recruitment partners was able to attend and provide some gender diversity to the panel mix.”
Hei tā Michael Pritchard nō Mayne Wetherell: “E tārake nei te kite ka mahue te ope kore i whakarite kia pēnā.”
Mayne Wetherell's Michael Pritchard said: “Clearly the panel shouldn't have been convened the way it was.”
Hei tā Michael, ka whakaritea e ia tētahi kaupapahere e mea nei me pai te kanorau o ngā ope e nōhia nei e ia haere ake nei, e whakakanohitia ai te kanorau o te ahumahi ture.
Pritchard said he would now have a personal policy of ensuring there was sufficient diversity on panels he appeared on and that they reflected the diversity in the law profession.
I tae atu a Nick Valentine nō DLA Piper i te hui, ā, hei tāna, i whakamōhio kē tōna pakihi i ō rātou āwangawanga i mua.
Nick Valentine at DLA Piper attended the event and said his firm raised concerns beforehand.
“Tē tika. Kīhai te ope i whakakanohi i te kanorau o te hanga o DLA Piper, o te ahumahi whānui rānei. Ko tāna e whakakanohi nei ko te nui o te mahi ki mua tonu i te aroaro,” hei tāna.
“It's not acceptable. The panel was not representative of the diverse makeup of DLA Piper, or the profession more broadly. It does show that there is still a lot of work to be done,” he said.
E ai ki tētahi māngai o Waipapa Taumata Rau, e ū “kaha” ana rātou, waihoki tō rātou kura ture, ki te mana ōrite me te kanorau, ā, e whakauru ana i ēnā uara ki te whakaakoranga me te akoranga.
A University of Auckland spokesperson said it and its law school are “strongly” committed to equity and diversity and incorporate such values into teaching and learning.
He mea whakamāori e te Kaihautū Reo Māori ki Puna, e Taurapa.
Translation by Stuff Kaihautū Reo Māori Taurapa.