Bristol

Solicitor's charter to make Bristol's property sector 'more diverse'

Karl Brown Image copyright Karl Brown
Image caption Karl Brown wants "young people from all backgrounds to see the great opportunities" in the city's property industry

A solicitor who wants to make the employment in Bristol's property sector more diverse has set up the "UK's first city property inclusion charter".

Karl Brown said more than 15 organisations had signed up so far and had pledged to create workforces which "reflect 21st Century Bristol".

Mr Brown said he wanted young people from all backgrounds to see the "great opportunities" available in the city.

Firms and organisations that sign up to the charter are given seven objectives.

Signatories to the charter include social housing associations, corporate building and architecture firms, estate agents and the University of the West of England (UWE).

Mr Brown, who is part of Clarke Willmott's commercial property team, said he believed the scheme would make "our sector even stronger".

He was the first black president of Bristol's Junior Chamber and is a social mobility ambassador for the Law Society of England and Wales.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Karl Brown said it was "important to remember that property affects everyone"

Mr Brown said: "My dad was an immigrant from Jamaica who found work as a plasterer in Bristol in the 1960s.

"It was this exposure to the property industry that probably helped shape my desire to specialise as a commercial property solicitor.

"As someone who is Bristol born and bred, I want young people from all backgrounds in Bristol to see the great opportunities in the Bristol property industry."

'Better workforce'

UWE's director of estates, Simon Macsorley, said: "Equality and diversity underpins our core values and as an organisation that provides accommodation for thousands of students from diverse backgrounds.

"We are committed to encouraging more young people from these groups to join us as employees."

Anna Klimczak, from social housing organisation United Communities, said: "We celebrate diversity and strive for our organisation to reflect the communities in which we serve and for this reason.

"We believe that a diverse workforce makes for a better workforce and the charter sets out important objectives and commitments to help us become a truly diverse and inclusive employer. "

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