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FORWARD: promoting acceptance, recognition and visibility of LGBTQI+ people within the Dutch legal profession.


Diversity and inclusion contribute to job satisfaction, productivity and innovation. An inclusive culture and working environment in which everyone can be themselves is not only "the right thing to do", but also contributes to the success of a company or organization.

By organizing substantive meetings and networking events, FORWARD aims to:

»increase the diversity of affiliated organizations; 
»create a network for LGBTQI+ legal professionals; and 
»exchange experiences and best practices.


07 Dec 2022

FORWARD Winter Event 2022: The Rule of Law for Everyone?

On 7 December 2022, FORWARD organised a panel discussion with the theme: The Rule of Law for Everyone? Speakers Ruud Koole, Rob Hofland, Marc Janssens and Han Warmelink gave their views on the rule of law and the limits of public debate, hosted by Eveline Rethmeier.
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21 Apr 2022

Spring event 2022: non-traditional families - (legal) challenges in 2022

It was so nice to see each other again in person after two years. The FORWARD Spring Event was well attended and we would like to thank everyone who was there. During this event, Sara Coster of "Stichting Meer dan Gewens"t and employment lawyer Loes Wever spoke about the legal challenges that non-traditional family forms still face in 2022. It was an inspiring evening and made us all think. What can I do within my organization to give non-traditional families the space they need?
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16 Nov 2021

FORWARD gives workshops genderinclusive language - Interview Advocatie

The call for gender-inclusive language is getting louder, but the legal jargon is lagging behind, conclude Boudewijn Smit (Chairman of the Advisory Board FORWARD) and David den Blaauwen (Board Member FORWARD). They offer law firms training courses on language use in which every target group feels seen. Advocatie interviewed them about these trainings.
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07 Oct 2021

FORWARD 2016 - 2021: the first lustrum

Time flies when you are having fun! This year marks the fifth anniversary of the Legal LGBT+ Network FORWARD. After a period of 1.5 years, in which there were no – or only limited – possibilities to get together, FORWARD organised a lustrum event with guest speakers sprekers Barbara Barend ((sports)journalist en TV host), Sander van 't Noordende (CEO Randstad, board member Out & Equal) en Zohair El Yassini (member of parliament VVD), met Astrid Oosenbrug (chairperson COC Nederland) as moderator.
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17 Sep 2021

FORWARD gives training on LGBTI+-diversity and inclusion Impact Day Sirius

On 17 September 2021, study association Sirius organized the first edition of the Impact Day. During this day, various socially relevant topics were discussed during lectures and workshops. Lotte van de Leij and David den Blaauwen, both board members at FORWARD, gave a workshop on LGBTI+ diversity and inclusion.
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07 Nov 2019

FORWARD Fall Event: unconscious bias training (ROSE Stories & Nina Blussé) & networking event

On November 7, 2019, FORWARD organized, an interactive training on unconscious bias in collaboration with ROSE Stories and Nina Blussé, at The Hoxton. During the training, the participants were introduced to their own brain and their unconscious bias in an interactive way. They have gained insight into the process of unconscious prejudices, and the effect thereof on daily thinking and doing, also on the work floor.
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11 Oct 2019

International Coming Out Day Event 2019

On International Coming Out Day, FORWARD and Lawyers for Lawyers organized a special event with guest speakers Michel Togué (human rights lawyer and activist from Cameroon) and Boris Dittrich (member of the Senate). Michel and Boris spoke about their experience and the challenges in defending LGBTQI+ + rights in an international context. In addition, Corporate Queer (Remco Boxelaar) launched a poster campaign to raise awareness of the meaning of the letters in the LGBTQI+ + alphabet.
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25 Jul 2019

Drinks summer edition 2019

On the hottest day of the year, it couldn't be hot enough during the Gender Neutral Latin Dance Workshop at the FORWARD Summer Event. Dance with him, dance with her, especially dance with everyone! Under the inspiring guidance of Jorge Suarez from Latin Amsterdam and Swing Latino, attendees danced their feet off. Afterwards, the cooling cocktails at Kanarie Club were more than welcome.
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16 May 2019

Drinks spring edition 2019

The LGBTQI+ community has a rich history, also in the Netherlands and certainly in Amsterdam. During the Sharing Stories - LGBTQ + guided tour in the Amsterdam Museum, personal and special stories from the community were told against the background of the beautiful museum collection. Educational and inspiring.
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07 Feb 2019

Drinks winter edition 2019

It is estimated that more than 2 million people in the Netherlands have bisexual feelings, fantasies or experiences, but you rarely hear about it. Time to pay more attention to that. Emiel Maliepaard , the speaker during the winter event, shed light on why bisexuals do not want to come out, but do occasionally want to express themselves as bisexual. He calls it the bisexual (in) visibility paradox , and discussed a number of ways forward to deal with this paradox and how bisexuality can become more visible.
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03 Jan 2019

New composition FORWARD board and events committee

As of 1 January 2019, Lotte van der Leij will be the new chair of our foundation, taking over from Boudewijn Smit. The FORWARD events committee also has a new composition.
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03 Jan 2019

FORWARD Winter Event 2019 on 7 February 2019

Save the date for the FORWARD Winter Event on February 7, 2019. The Winter Event will take place on a spectacular location. More information to follow soon.
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15 Nov 2018

FORWARD is looking for enthusiastic members for the events committee and the board

FORWARD is looking for people who want to get actively involved in FORWARD and organize events. Would you like to join the FORWARD team?
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13 Nov 2018

FORWARD chair Boudewijn Smit is Mr. of the week

Dutch magazine Mr. (which name refers to the Dutch academic title, like LLM, not mister) features a lawyer each week in their column: Mr. of the week. This week it's our chair Boudewijn Smit (1991). Boudewijn works as a lawyer at NautaDutilh, and works to improve LGBTQI+ inclusion within the legal profession. FORWARD recently presented the 'Best practices for LGBTQI+ inclusion in the workplace', a manual with recommendations for companies in the legal sector who want to work on greater LGBTQI+ inclusion. Read the entire article (Dutch only):
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05 Nov 2018

Forward network provides guidance for LGBTQI+ inclusivion in the office

Legal LGBTQI+ network FORWARD has released a document with recommendations for a more diverse and inclusive work environment. The 'Best practices for LGBTQI+ inclusivion in the workplace' have been sent to partners and HR managers from all major law firms associated with FORWARD. Although the recommendations also apply to other companies, from diversity training to gender-neutral toilets.
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01 Nov 2018

Drinks fall edition 2018

In fall 2018, FORWARD hosted a private movie screening of the pink rom com "Just Friends" in cult cinema Lab111 in Amsterdam. The screening was preceded by a lecture by Henk Burger, the films screenwriter.
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03 Aug 2018

Rocycle (P)RIDE event

In collaboration with cycling studio Rocycle, FORWARD got sportive for a special (P)RIDE. During a 45-minute workout on Pride beats from the likes of RuPaul, Lady Gaga and Geri Halliwell, trainers Luuk and Joey ensured everyone started the Amsterdam Pride weekend on a high. Cooling down with healthy smoothies included.
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03 Aug 2018

FORWARD launches Mentoring Platform

Today, FORWARD introduces our Mentoring Platform. This platform links individuals working within the legal profession to a confidential basis to a more senior mentor. Law students are also eligible to enroll in the FORWARD Mentoring Platform.
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21 Jun 2018

Drinks summer edition 2018

For solstice, trans women Lisa van Ginneken and Tess Bens shared their experiences about their transition and the challenges they faced. Both women work with Transvisie, a Dutch foundation for gender diversity. It's obvious the T is inextricably linked to other letters of the LGBTI+ community.
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05 Apr 2018

Drinks spring edition 2018

During a tour of Amsterdam zoo Artis, we learned that the animal kingdom shows amazing diversity in gender identity and sexual orientation, Did you know that 25% of the wild flamingos are homosexual? Gay couples build nests which are twice the size of heterosexual couples. Did you also know that 78% of female Japanese macaques are lesbian? For macaques a greeting is all it takes to mount each other? In short, enough conversation starters for the subsequent drinks in Grand Café De Tropen.
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23 Nov 2017

Drinks winter edition 2017

Network event at the College Hotel.
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21 Jun 2017

Drinks summer edition 2017 bij FOAM

Networking event at FOAM with guest speaker Aynouk Tan, a lecturer on fashion and identity. She observes fashion from an anthropological point of view and discusses how the clothes we wear constitutes our identity and perceptions. In her renowned column in Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad she weekly dressed herself in a different outfit to physically address these themes.
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31 Jan 2017

A 'pink' lawyer feels particularly like a trusted advisor

Because 'pink' law is a different ball game.
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23 Nov 2016

The freedom to develop your passion

FORWARD in the news!
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10 Nov 2016

Drinks winter edition 2016 - W hotel Amsterdam

Network event at the W Hotel with guest speakers twins Marja and Ellie Lust, telling their life stories about growing up, coming to terms with being lesbian and now being advocates for LTBTI+ rights.
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10 Nov 2016

Police sisters Ellie and Marja Lust are hosted by 'pink' lawyers

Pink lawyers can network, exchange experiences and catch up with each other.
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06 Sep 2016

FORWARD wants recognition of diversity within conservative legal profession

Legal network for Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals and Transgenders (LGBTs)
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08 Jun 2016

Blog post 'what lawyers can do for the LGBTQI+ community'

The 'pink' edges of the law: what lawyers can do for the LGBTQI+ community
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25 Apr 2016

Article 'Legal LGBTQI+ network Forward has been founded'

Legal LGBTQI+ network Forward has been founded
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21 Apr 2016

Launch event FORWARD

Opening drink with guest speaker Valentijn de Hingh, a Dutch female fasion model & DJ. From the age of 8 until the age of 17 de Hingh was filmed for the Dutch television program "Valentijn", following her transition.
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18 Apr 2016

Article 'First legal LGBTQI+ network'

First legal LGBTQI+ network: 'Forward is not just for fun'
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12 Apr 2016

LGBTQI+ network for lawyers

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FORWARD founders







FORWARD friends






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