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The BSB’s most recent report on diversity (“Diversity at the Bar 2018”) indicated that of those members of the practising Bar that responded, 2.8% of the total self-identified as having a disability for the purposes of the Equality Act 2010. Soberingly, the figures showed that the proportion of barristers with a disability fell with seniority (3.1% of pupils identifying as having a disability as against 1.1% of silks).
For the last decade, the Bar Council, the Bar Standards Board, and the Inns of Court have collectively sought to improve the diversity of the practising Bar. This is viewed both as an end in itself (it being accepted that the Bar ought to reflect the community from which we are drawn and that we seek to serve) as well it being understood that as the senior judiciary are still predominantly drawn from the Bar, increased diversity at the bar will have an impact on the make up of the judiciary too.
Access to the Bar for the disabled continues to be affected by a number of factors that include:
Cost remains a significant problem. As a profession that is to
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