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Stepping Up as a Bristol Green Capital Partnership Supporting Member

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Kirsty Green-Mann, Burges Salmon’s Head of Corporate Responsibility, explains in the blog post below why the firm decided to become a Supporting Member of Bristol Green Capital Partnership, and highlights some of their responsible business and environmental objectives.

Burges Salmon is an independent commercial law firm with a long-standing commitment to responsible business and being a force for good in Bristol where the majority of our firm’s people live and work.

The firm has had a relationship with the Bristol Green Capital Partnership since the provision of pro-bono services back in 2015 and Bristol being the European Green Capital. More recently we have provided in-kind support by hosting events such as a sustainable food Business Breakfast and the Spark Forum. It was therefore a natural evolution for us to become a Supporting Member.

Over the past year or so at Burges Salmon we’ve appraised our approach to responsible business and sustainability and undertaken work to incorporate the UN Sustainable Development Goals accounting for how the firm operates and the wider contribution made through the provision of our legal services, community engagement activities and organisational collaborations.

Our priorities are in the pursuit of five responsible business objectives, to:

Enable wider engagement in wellbeing with a focus on resilience and mental health. This is about the wellbeing of our people as well as being an advocate in the wider community. We have trained an internal cohort of Mental Health First Aiders, support Bristol Mind and collaborate through Thrive Bristol.

Enable the progression of talent, in an inclusive workplace, and in the pursuit of social mobility. This is about working against inequality and championing talent. We have internal diversity and inclusion networks and tackle social inequality by supporting employability skills, providing work experience and school interventions.

Take action for environmental sustainability with positive community impacts. Through our Environment Committee, objectives have been set towards 2023. We have strength in our legal expertise making a positive contribution towards a net zero carbon future. Externally, we have cultivated relationships with organisations such as the Legal Sustainability Alliance, local Wildlife Trusts and community farms.

Contribute to the provision of employment opportunities that are inclusive and fair. As a business and through client work we drive employment. In contributing to work opportunities that are open and fair, we promote the living wage, deploy best practice recruitment, work against Modern Slavery and contribute to social justice.

Work together and with others for a greater collective impact. This is part of the Burges Salmon values and culture. Through collaboration with clients, community organisations and across the legal and wider business sector, we seek to share insights and learn from others – coming together for the greater good.

The Bristol Green Capital Partnership is a natural fit across the agenda and in particular in terms of action for environmental sustainability and working together for greater collective impact.

Our Bristol Office is located on Glass Wharf near Temple Meads in our BREEAM excellent rated office that features rainwater harvesting, dock-water cooling and energy efficient cladding. We operate to the environmental management certification ISO 14001 to facilitate continuous improvement and work hard to engage our people with an internal network of environmental champions ‘BSustainable’ and an annual ‘Green Week’.

Environment objectives relate to the pursuit of net zero carbon, removal of single-use disposables, paper reduction, water reduction, waste reduction and improved recycling. Earlier in the year we gave our support to the ‘Going for Gold’ food sustainability campaign and have been named Gold Champions for our actions so far.

We’re delighted to have been accepted as Supporting Members. Given the environmental challenges we collectively face and the scale of impact that can be achieved through a focus on sustainable cities it’s vitally important to have organisations like the Bristol Green Capital Partnership and that we all work together, which the Partnership will help facilitate even further.

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