A national campaign that wants to change the stigma and stereotypes about how afro hairstyles are perceived in the workplace is starring one of Thursfields’ top lawyers.

Jade Linton, a Senior Associate Solicitor in the Employment team at Thursfields’ Solihull office, is participating in Project Embrace by proudly modelling her natural afro-textured hair in one of its posters.

Jade is pictured with a stunning afro bun-style under the slogan: “Does natural hair stop you seeing natural professionalism?”

Michelle O’Hara, the HR and commercial services Director at Thursfields, said: “We’ll thrilled to see Jade starring in such a positive national campaign.

Our equality and diversity strategy is focused around education and awareness to develop a more inclusive workplace, and so it’s fitting that Jade – one of our equality and diversity champions – is participating in Project Embrace.

Sadly, afro-textured hair has been considered by some employers as unsuitable for the workplace and contrary to their workplace dress codes.

Part of developing a more inclusive workplace is everyone having the confidence to come to work as themselves without fear of scrutiny as differences are better represented, understood and embraced as the norm.”

Project Embrace will see Jade feature as one of the campaign’s faces, featuring on 800 billboards around the country to challenge misconceptions and promote diversity.

Jade said: “I understand first-hand the struggle between being proud of one’s heritage and the desire to be accepted by the majority, and it was one of the reasons I chemically straightened my own hair for many years.

I now love wearing my afro hair in a natural way, and want to give others the courage to do so whilst dismantling the systems that suggest afro hair is unprofessional.

I am immensely proud to be taking part in this important Project Embrace campaign.

I am also pleased that my employer Thursfields is so keen to back both my participation and the wider education of people to create a more inclusive workplace.”

As part of its commitment to Project Embrace, Thursfields is holding a series of inclusive workplace dress codes seminars as part of the HR Exchange events, entitled ‘Dress codes in the modern workplace: an employer’s guide’.

These will run at Thursfields’ Birmingham and Worcester offices from 8.30am to 10am on Tuesday 15 October, and then at the company’s Solihull and Halesowen offices at the same time on Thursday 17 October.

Anyone interested can book places here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/hr-exchange-dress-codes-in-the-modern-workplace-an-employers-guide-tickets-72917206327

More information about the Project Embrace campaign is available at www.projectembrace.co.uk.

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