Simont Braun - Avocats advocaten lawyers

 

CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

Social equity and economic efficiency are major concerns at Simont Braun. These issues are an important part of our strategy and we continually strive to actively defend the fundamental values of social commitment.

We promote a fairer and more equitable world, a process that starts in-house. In the workplace, we ensure the well-being of all our staff while enhancing diversity and reducing our environmental footprint. To this end, we also enter into partnerships with businesses, non-profit organisations and civil society.

PRO BONO ACTIVITIES Every year Simont Braun provides hours of legal support to non-profit organisations and vulnerable individuals. Some of our lawyers are also involved in the drafting of key legislative texts on a pro bono basis.

Selected list of our initiatives :

  • Paul Alain Foriers and Rafaël Jafferali are both members of the groups of experts chosen by the Belgian Minister of Justice, Koen Geens, which in 2018 worked on a pro bono basis on the redesign and modernisation of the Belgian Companies Code and the Belgian Civil Code respectively. Such legislative involvement on a pro bono basis enjoys the full support of Simont Braun.
  • Paul Alain Foriers and Vanessa Marquette are actively involved in supporting the development of Hôpital Erasme. Paul Alain Foriers sits on the board of Fondation Erasme, a major trust that supports and finances medical research in Belgium and internationally. Vanessa Marquette is a non-executive director of Hôpital Erasme. Their work for these organisations is provided on a pro bono basis.
  • Emmanuel Cornu is the chairperson of Grandes Conférences Catholiques, a highly reputable and ancient organisation in Belgium that organises conferences on a variety of general interest topics, welcoming speakers of international stature. Simont Braun is the organisation’s registered office address and hosts its secretarial services.
  • Sandrine Hirsch is chairperson of La Chapelle de Bourgogne ASBL, a centre located in Brussels for young boys with social or behavioural difficulties. Simont Braun provides a range of legal services to this institution at no charge.
  • Manuela von Kuegelgen has been actively involved with Maison des Migrants to enable the organisation to use their building for migrant families waiting for a visa. Manuela is also an active member of Médecins du Monde and provides Les Fleurs de la Rue with administrative support. Manuela von Kuegelgen is also an active member of Planète Vie, an organisation promoting sustainable development, and our firm actively advises the association on a range of legal matters.
  • Eric De Gryse is a board member of Prinses Juliana school, a Dutch school in Brussels, for which the firm frequently provides legal services in a variety of areas.
  • Catherine Houssa is a board member of Alterfin, a socially responsible investor operating in developing countries.
  • We provide assistance to Fabrique d’Eglise de la Cambre for multiple and complex matters relating to intellectual property.
  • Caroline De Baets and Paul Alain Foriers are regularly requested by the Supreme Court to provide pro bono legal assistance.
  • Several of our partners have participated on the professional bodies of both the French and Flemish sections of the Brussels Bar. Our partnership includes two former Deans of the Brussels Bar and several former members of the Brussels Bar Council.

DONATION POLICY Every year Simont Braun allocates a budget to support a number of selected charities.

  • For 15 years now, Simont Braun has participated in the 20km run through Brussels as part of the Legal Run team, which supports a local charity each year.
  • In 2018 we notably donated to La Chapelle de Bourgogne and Fonds Erasme.
  • In 2018, the selected charity was Infirmiers de Rue ASBL (nurses for the homeless), which was proposed by Simont Braun.

ENVIRONMENTAL COMMITMENT

In our day-to-day activities, we are committed to a healthier, cleaner and sustainable planet. We are continuously adapting our behaviour and have implemented a series of measures to reduce our environmental footprint. We also make sure that our selection criteria for external providers incorporate these issues.

Paper & Energy

Simont Braun’s lawyers and staff join forces to decrease paper and energy consumption in our office. When we print, we exclusively use recycled paper. In the same spirit, in 2017 the firm decided to stop sending paper greetings cards, switching to e-cards and donating the amount saved to charity (in 2017 and 2018: Street Nurses).

Plastic

Recently we also stopped using pens made of plastic and metal, replacing them with sustainable wooden pens. They are approved under the eco-certification scheme, PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification). Glass bottles have replaced all plastic bottles and cans, and our catering partners are required to avoid using single-use plastic in their deliveries.

Food & Beverages

The fruits delivered weekly to the office are organic and seasonal, and our coffee is fair trade. We also collect food waste.

Transport

Finally, as our offices are located in central Brussels, most of our lawyers come to work using public transport, by bike… or even on foot! Simont Braun pays for all its employees’ public transport costs.