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Littler, the world’s largest employment and labor law practice representing management, of which Reliance is the Belgian member, has been named a “2019 Top Ten Firm for Gender Equity” by Yale Law Women (YLW). See https://www.littler.com/publication-press/press/littler-named-top-ten-firm-gender-equity As far as Littler's Belgian member firm Reliance is concerned: 40% of the firm's equity partners and 70% of the firm's associates are women. ■
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Last weekend, our colleague Christine Rizzo participated in a free legal helpline receiving national press coverage. This pro bono initiative was organized by the Young Bar of Brussels, of which Christine Rizzo is a director. More than 50 lawyers joined forces to answer legal questions by individuals and companies, in 20 areas of law. The initiative aims to improve access to justice. The concept of the helpline had been launched 30 years ago by the Young Bar of Montreal. This year, the Brussels’ Young Bar decided to organize the helpline simultaneously with their colleagues in Montreal. ■
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Excellent article on #Metoo in an M&A context written by our Littler UK and US colleagues. This appeared in the Spring edition of Today’s General Counsel. ■
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In May 2020, social elections will take place in Belgian companies to set up works councils and committees for the prevention and protection at work ("CPPW"). These will be in place for the next 4 years. It may only be the spring of 2019, but the process leading to these elections has already kicked off. Elections for works councils have to be held by companies employing at least 100 employees on average. For the CPPW, the threshold is 50 employees. The average employment figure is determined over the course of a 12 month reference period starting October 1, 2018 and ending September 30, 2019. We are in the middle of it. External agency (interim) workers also count towards the average, unless they temporarily replace an employee whose employment contract has been suspended. The reference period for this category has just kicked off, as it runs from 1 April 2019 until 30 June 2019. If the average of your own employees is close to the threshold, the use of external agency workers in the current quarter might tip you over. Time to start counting? Over the next months, we will unravel the most common pitfalls of the social election process. Watch this page! ■