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How LexisNexis Legal & Professional Will Work To Advance Racial Justice

July 17, 2020 (5 min read)

By Mike Walsh, CEO

LexisNexis is committed to inclusion, equality and racial justice and we believe unequivocally that Black Lives Matter.

Over the past several weeks, the management team and I have spent time reflecting, listening, learning, and discussing what role our company – and all of us collectively – must play in helping to drive change, both within LexisNexis Legal & Professional and in the communities where we live and work globally. With significant input from the African Ancestry Network (AAN) employee resource group, we have developed a set of actions that we believe will help us make lasting change.

Today, LexisNexis is making commitments to address racial injustice and inequity for the Black and African American community. We will additionally take important steps to address the needs of other communities across the company in the next five years. We are focusing on three areas, guided by our mission to advance the rule of law and our overall Inclusion & Diversity (I&D) strategy: 

  1. Ensure a culture and practice of inclusion and diversity at LexisNexis. We believe that diverse teams are essential for innovation, reducing groupthink and enhancing critical decision-making. We must, therefore, hold ourselves accountable to cultivate an inclusive and diverse workforce, ensuring equality and opportunity for career progression in the workplace. And we must ensure there are ample opportunities for Black professionals to succeed at all levels at LexisNexis, especially in leadership positions.
    • I am pleased to announce that we have created a new role dedicated to developing and implementing a strategic inclusion and diversity agenda for LexisNexis Legal & Professional. Effective immediately, Ronda Moore has been named as LexisNexis’ first Chief Inclusion and Diversity Officer reporting to Alyce Clark. Ronda joined the organization in 2016 as Senior Director of Talent Development in North America and became VP, Global Talent Development in 2018. Ronda has been instrumental in evolving our talent development programs. She has enabled greater career progression for our people through the annual organizational talent review process that she oversees; Ronda created and launched our unconscious bias training series; and she recently rolled out the Courageous Conversation series, helping us better understand and openly discuss systemic racism. Ronda has been an outspoken advocate for equality in partnership with the AAN and other ERGs, as well as gender equality and overall inclusion efforts, providing valued guidance to the organization. I look forward to working with Ronda in this new capacity. Please join me in congratulating Ronda.
    • As a part of our strategic I&D planning, we will update key performance objectives to reflect new I&D goals. We will strengthen key areas related to eliminating systemic racism in our business. This includes better understanding the minority makeup of our teams, creating minority career planning programs, putting further practices in place to ensure that we attract, retain and develop diverse talent in each area of our business, enhancing training opportunities for all employees to stop racism and unconscious bias and increase allyship, and reviewing and analyzing metrics related to these efforts for continuous improvement. 
    • In order to support the work of employee resource groups (ERGs) across the organization, we will now provide employees with 16 hours to participate in ERG activities, in addition to 16 hours of Cares time and 16 hours of Pro Bono time. This will be available soon for all employees. As a leadership team, we will meet with the AAN quarterly to track and assess progress on all key initiatives. We will also evaluate funding for AAN and all ERGs at the company to ensure support and consistency.
  2. Eliminate systemic racism in our legal systems. LexisNexis has long been committed to advancing the rule of law around the world. We must do more to eradicate racism where it exists and ensure equality for all under the law, transparency of law, independent judiciaries, and accessible legal remedy.
    • We are committing to make charitable donations over the next five years through cash and in-kind contributions of products, services and employee expertise. We will be selecting organizations to work with, based on input from our ERG communities, primarily because of their alignment to our goals of advancing the elements of the rule of law and their experience in and a strong commitment to improving racial and social justice.  
    • We will work with the LexisNexis Rule of Law Foundation and our community of customers, leading legal organizations, NGOs and other partners to raise awareness of inequities and hidden biases in legal systems, and affect change. We will work with our network to influence and address inequality in our communities. The LexisNexis Rule of Law Foundation works across legal and wider industry groups to support change and will seek input from all ERGs to see how we can widen this network to support this important cause.
    • We will use our solutions and data to provide insights into systemic racism in legal systems and support positive change. Many of our product offerings contain deep legal data and analytic capabilities that can be used to help illuminate racial and social disparities and support data-driven discussions for change.  
  3. Be an advocate for Black lives. We publicly condemn racism and recognize its deteriorating effects on our society. We will fight against systemic racism, and we will use our influence and resources for this cause. We will tap into our teams to convert the passion and good intention of our people into new ideas and pragmatic action.
    • We will continue to publicly support calls for racial equality and justice. We’ll use our social and web channels to advocate for those whose voices may not be heard otherwise.
    • LexisNexis will sign the Business in the Community Race at Work Charter and is committed to its five calls-to-action to ensure that ethnic minorities are represented at all levels in our organization.
    • As a part of our commitment to the Race at Work Charter, Jamie Buckley will become our executive sponsor on Race. will work closely with the AAN, Product and Technology teams across RELX, our Global Senior Leadership Team, and Management Team to surface and support new ideas to combat systemic racism and support Black lives through our technology and solutions. We will also work to remove any and all racist or offensive language from our technology and broader lexicon.  
    • Our teams will champion hackathons to expand our thinking on solutions to end systemic racism, through our products and beyond. We’ll bring together employees, students, customers, legal, corporate and academic leaders, and partner organizations to support this effort. 

LexisNexis people around the globe express their solidarity toward eliminating racism. They have submitted hundreds of ideas, large and small, on how we can help address racial injustice. The proof of our commitment will be in the actions we proudly push forward to fight systemic racism. We believe we can make a lasting and positive change in the fight against injustice for our employees and for our customers, and while strengthening the rule of law.