Leading national business law firm Hall & Wilcox, has underlined its commitment to diversity by advising Australia’s first Pride Centre on several fronts over the past 12 months.
The Victorian Pride Centre will be built in Melbourne, with the current Victorian government committing $15 million in funding to the project, which will be bigger than San Francisco’s LGBTI Community Centre. A statement from the Victorian government said the Victorian Pride Centre will: “…showcase LGBTI art and history, bring together advisory, health and support services, and feature community spaces to provide a safe social environment.”
Corporate and commercial partner James Morvell, said the firm was the primary legal advisor to the newly created organisation entrusted with the task of building and then operating the Victorian Pride Centre. Hall & Wilcox has predominantly been involved on a pro bono basis in assisting with organisation structuring, fund raising and site selection and procurement. As a result of this support, Hall & Wilcox is recognised as a Gold Partner to the Pride Centre. “The Victorian Pride Centre is going to be a fantastic and long overdue resource for Australia’s LGBTI community, and we are proud to have had a long-running involvement in the project since mid-2016.”
Hall & Wilcox’s Melbourne office has served as the Victorian Pride Centre’s temporary home, hosting all board meetings while the centre’s final design, location and timeframe is determined.
Natasha Toholka, Hall & Wilcox’s Diversity & Inclusion Committee Chair said advising the board of the Victorian Pride Centre was a logical step for the firm, which has stepped up its commitment to diversity over the last two years. "We strive to embrace diversity and inclusion as a firm because we believe diversity allows us to become more innovative, relate better to our clients and also contribute in a more fulsome way to the broader community."
“Last year we adopted a new diversity and inclusion policy. When we heard about the Pride Centre it seemed like an opportune time to make an even more tangible impact for an important cause for diversity and inclusion. We felt we had the right team and skill set to contribute.”
Hall & Wilcox has provided legal advice in terms of organisational structure, taxation and corporate and commercial issues.
Other key advisors to the Pride Centre have included PwC, Development Victoria and Cox Architecture.
Hall & Wilcox are further showing its support for diversity and acceptance in the community by participating in this year's Wear it Purple Day today, where staff across each of its six offices are wearing purple in support.