This is a business model policy that intends to help the Firm to be socially accountable—to itself, its stakeholders, and the public. By practicing corporate social responsibility, the Firm aims to be conscious, to monitor and to adjust the kind of impact the Firm, its officers, associates and staff are having on all aspects of society, including human, economic, and environmental impact. Our plan is to finally achieve a fully developed ESG practice. The underlying idea is that the Firm should operate in ways that enhance human rights, the economy, the society, and the environment, instead of contributing negatively to them, and this Policy aims to achieve just that. In doing so the policy also aims to meet and exceed the mandatory provisions of any relevant legislation, and if legislation does not exist in a particular area, the policy specifies that the Firm should ensure it carries out the adopted best practices anyway. Therefore, the Firm is committed to ensure that all its operations are conducted by following the below policy.
UN Global Compact
This policy was prepared, considering the Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact, namely that:
Principle 1: Businesses should support and respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights; and
Principle 2: make sure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses.
Principle 3: Businesses should uphold the freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining;
Principle 4: the elimination of all forms of forced and compulsory labour;
Principle 5: the effective abolition of child labour; and
Principle 6: the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation.
Principle 7: Businesses should support a precautionary approach to environmental challenges;
Principle 8: undertake initiatives to promote greater environmental responsibility; and
Principle 9: encourage the development and diffusion of environmentally friendly technologies.
Principle 10: Businesses should work against corruption in all its forms, including extortion and bribery.
The Firm shares the view that by incorporating the Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact into strategies, policies, and procedures, and establishing a culture of integrity, companies are not only upholding their basic responsibilities to people and planet, but also setting the stage for sustainable development.
In this spirit, the Firm decided to proceed to the implementation of ISO 45000 family of international standards that concerns the Occupational Health and Safety Management System, ISO 14000 family of international standards that concern the Environmental Management System, in addition to ISO 9000 family of international standards, that concern the Quality Management System.
To whom this policy applies
This policy applies to all actions, procedures, and operations to which the Firm engages. It is for this reason that this policy is required to be met by all equity and non- equity partners of the Firm, the Board of Directors, all Heads of Practice, all Function officers, associates, lawyers, and non-law professionals and other members of staff (our “People”).
To the extent permissible by business etiquette, the Firm will attempt to persuade other law firms – members of the International Networks to which the Firm is also a member, or other law firms – members of the Cyprus Bar Association, other external associates, clients, suppliers and public authorities of the benefits of incorporating and complying with this or similar Sustainability Policies.
The Firm is its People. We want to recruit the best and we commit to accommodate our People’s physiological, safety, love, esteem and self-actualisation needs and concerns, for them to attain their life targets, their work-related concerns and beyond.
We strive to build a climate of tolerance, diversification and equal access to opportunities. We afford no tolerance on any form of discrimination which relates to gender, sexual preferences, nationality, race, beliefs, religion, cultural, social, economic, or political status. We maintain policies and procedures which make qualifications, skill and experience the basis for the recruitment, placement, training, and advancement of staff at all levels.
From the very first day of our People’s vocation with us, we make sure they are welcomed, introduced, trained, and inducted in all processes they are going to be undertaking as part of their careers. Our processes are well defined in our LLPO Policies, Processes and Procedures and our LLPO Operations Manual, designating a supervisor to guide and advise throughout.
We aim for our People to lead in their areas of expertise but at the same time make sure they understand the importance of being part of a Team and execute as part of the LLPO Family. Our People come to appreciate the power of the Team, to maximise results by caring for each member of the Team. Team building activities periodically held, enhance the team members experiences and interrelations.
Everyone at the Firm is on a clear career path. Trainee, Junior Associate, Associate, Senior Associate are the steps of the ladder that everyone is prepared to climb. Appraisal is ongoing, not as an examination, but rather as a tireless effort to enhance professional expertise and personal development.
We aim to maintain an excellent in-office working environment, with designated areas of breaks, areas to discuss, think, rest and lunch. No maximum breaks policy, no limitation in social media utilisation, no limitation on absences from office. We afford our People with a choice to diversify their working hours amongst other by exercising flexible hours of work policies, exercise voluntary work from home policies or projects-based work policies. We want our People to be active members of our society, to express their opinion publicly but also to engage civil problems and institutions and extend the values on which the Firm is engaging.
We care about our People’s health and safety, and we commit to maintain the highest standards available for the management of occupational health and safety issues. We are also committed to put in place a comprehensive pension fund plan in addition to other plans held privately and aim to deliver as many benefits to them as they become available.
We are set to exceed our clients’ expectations. We maintain clearly termed and target-based retainer agreements with all our clients. We act only on specific instructions, in a confidential and trusting manner of the higher quality standards. A supervising partner oversees all services rendered and stands ready to resolve any enquiry as to the services provided.
We aim to extinguish the knowledge gap between professional lawyers and affected parties, inherent in our trade, so that informed decisions are taken by the person seeking the legal service and guidance. We aim at limiting the costs involved in any legal process. We aim to communicate the benefits of settling through negotiations and resolving disputes on a maximum benefit with a minimum expense to the client. Where litigation is mandatory, we strive to deliver results services and results in a timely and efficient manner.
We aim that our clients will share or positively contribute to our view of sustainability and corporate social responsibility. We let our clients evaluate our services, express any suggestions they deem necessary, and we undertake to act upon any such suggestion so that the overall experience of the services provided becomes exemplary.
We support the Cyprus Bar Association’s effort to structure a framework within which pro bono legal services may be provided. We strongly advocate that pro bono work should become fully accessible to those in need, to the underprivileged segments of the society, but also to groups promoting the ideas of equality, free speech, women empowerment, immigrants, inclusion, and protection of the environment.
We choose and monitor our Suppliers carefully to acknowledge those with similar standards of corporate social responsibility and convince those without of the benefits steaming from having in place sustainable and socially beneficial policies. We tend to prefer local Suppliers who adhere to the highest standards of corporate responsibility towards their employees, customers, other suppliers, the environment and our community.
We are part of the Environment, and we commit to apply the highest standards available to manage the impact of our operations to the environment. We commit to identify, reduce, and monitor the environmental impact that our business activities may have. In all actions and processes we engage; we assess them through applicable protocols to promote green policies for sustainable development. We commit to procedures that aim at waste reduction, re-use and recycling. We aim at using only recyclable materials or materials that can be made from recycled materials.
We encourage greener transport by encouraging staff to walk, cycle, car share if possible. We encourage staff to use greener fuels in their personal vehicles if possible. All firm vehicles are to be gradually upgraded to those that are most energy efficient, as they become available.
Our Local Community
The Firm commits to support local community via several direct engagements, the following being an example:
- We support via funding and costs undertaking the work of Enalia Physis Environmental Research Centre, Cyprus’s leading NGO on marine sciences, covering a wide range of research fields ranging from fisheries science to marine protected areas, artificial reefs, invasive species, benthic and cave ecology and to marine and coastal conservation. Its main priority is to generate environmental knowledge and applicable use of results through scientific research that will help towards the protection and conservation of our marine and terrestrial ecosystems.
- We provide 4 scholarships funding to Frederick University Cyprus, to be distributed to two Education Studies and two Legal Studies undergraduates, at the option of the Scholarships Committee of the University. Frederick University operates since 2007, although its founders have a history of more than 50 years in higher education in Cyprus. The University offers a broad range of academic programs of study in the areas of Science, Engineering, Business, Arts, Architecture, Media, Humanities, Health, and Education. The University has a strong focus on academic research, being one of the leading research organisations in the country.
- We are fully supporting and sponsoring the operations of the Nicosia Athletic Club and undertake all expenses of its Fencing Team. Nicosia Athletic Club is a local sports club of Nicosia, recognised by the Cyprus Sports Organisation and various Sports Associations of the Country. Its mission is to engage and introduce, as many sports as possible, to the youth and adults of Nicosia. Its Fencing Team is already a member of the Cyprus Fencing Association, participating and organising fencing competitions on the official calendar of the Cyprus Fencing Association. We are also supporting annually via grants and sponsorships the three main Football Clubs of Nicosia, as well as other regular grants to other Nicosia sports clubs.
- We engage regularly in the support of local community charities either via monetary contributions, legal advice or by donating time, such as staff participation in volunteering days. We are particularly supportive to children health charities, immigrants’ inclusion organisations, trust building activities among the Greek and Turkish Community in Cyprus, and of the worked performed by groups supporting the underprivileged.
- We support our People in participating in public offices promoting social and community work and we even include such participation on their annual evaluation.
This Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility Policy is being reviewed annually by the Firm’s Board of Directors.