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Our full statement on the Lloyd’s market’s role in the slave trade

Thu 18 Jun 2020

Lloyd’s has a long and rich history dating back over 330 years, but there are some aspects of our history that we are not proud of.

In particular, we are sorry for the role played by the Lloyd’s market in the eighteenth and nineteenth Century slave trade. This was an appalling and shameful period of British history, as well as our own, and we condemn the indefensible wrongdoing that occurred during this period.

In acknowledging our own history, we also remain committed to focusing on the actions we can take today to shape our future. Lloyd’s values an inclusive culture – it is a cornerstone of the market’s future success and that is why culture sits alongside performance and strategy as one of the Corporation’s top strategic priorities. In recent years Lloyd’s has driven ahead with a series of positive programmes designed to improve culture across the market. We have made progress, but not enough.

Therefore, on 10 June we committed to a number of initiatives to help improve the experience of Black and Minority Ethnic talent in the Lloyd’s market. We will:

  1. Invest in positive programmes to attract, retain and develop Black and Minority Ethnic talent in the Lloyd’s market, including launching our ‘Accelerate’ Programme – a modular programme to develop Minority Ethnic Future Leaders across the market.
  2. Review our employee and partner policies, as well as our organisational artefacts, to ensure that they are explicitly non-racist. We are currently conducting a review of all aspects of how Lloyd’s presents its history, which includes representation on
  3. Commit to education and research. We will educate our colleagues and continue our research into the experiences of Black and Minority Ethnic professionals working in insurance, and share what we learn with the market.
  4. Provide financial support to charities and organisations promoting opportunity and inclusion for Black and Minority Ethnic groups.
  5. Develop a long-term action plan in collaboration with our Culture Advisory Group, Black and Minority Ethnic colleagues and white allies who will inform our journey and hold us to account.

We are grateful to our Black and Minority Ethnic colleagues who have helped to shape our conversations and actions to ensure that we create an environment free from injustice for them and for all. Our commitment is that we will continue to listen and learn as we act and to measure our progress.

There is a long way to go but we are determined that we can and will create a culture in the Lloyd’s market in which everybody can flourish.