Rely on the most comprehensive, up-to-date legal content designed and curated by lawyers for lawyers
Work faster and smarter to improve your drafting productivity without increasing risk
Accelerate the creation and use of high quality and trusted legal documents and forms
Streamline how you manage your legal business with proven tools and processes
Manage risk and compliance in your organisation to reduce your risk profile
Stay up to date and informed with insights from our trusted experts, news and information sources
Access the best content in the industry, effortlessly — confident that your news is trustworthy and up to date.
With over 30 practice areas, we have all bases covered. Find out how we can help
Our trusted tax intelligence solutions, highly-regarded exam training and education materials help guide and tutor Tax professionals
Regulatory, business information and analytics solutions that help professionals make better decisions
A leading provider of software platforms for professional services firms
In-depth analysis, commentary and practical information to help you protect your business
LexisNexis Blogs shed light on topics affecting the legal profession and the issues you're facing
Legal professionals trust us to help navigate change. Find out how we help ensure they exceed expectations
Lex Chat is a LexisNexis current affairs podcast sharing insights on topics for the legal profession
Discuss the latest legal developments, ask questions, and share best practice with other LexisPSL subscribers
The Government Legal Service (GLS) hosted a networking and recruitment event for BAME (Black Asian and Minority Ethnic) lawyers to mark the start of National Inclusion Week. Grania Langdon-Down interviewed Senior government lawyer Mel Nebhrajani who says the ‘diversity story’ should be about the resilience, insight and talent of BAME lawyers and not portrayed as one of ‘powerless victims’.
I qualified in 1994 and did my pupillage at the Chancery Bar, which was then far from being diverse. Part-way through Iapplied for, and got, a tenancy at a traditional Lincoln’s Inn chambers that had only ever had two women and no one of colour. But it was prepared to be forward thinking and it ran a name-blind application process. The top four candidates were all women, with two of us from ethnic minority backgrounds. Idon’t think Iwould have got a tenancy as easily if that hadn’t been the process.
But Ifound practice at the Bar much harder than Ianticipated. The combination of being young, female and Asian wasn’t easy. People often assumed Iwas the court clerk or an usher. My own clients sometimes wouldn’t believe that Iwas their barrister. Solicitors didn’t instruct me because my name was too difficult or refused to instruct me for spurious reasons. Iwas sometimes treated as if Ishould just be grateful to have been allowed to join the club.
I often felt underestimated, particularly by opponents, which Iused to my advantage on more than one occasion. Judges often wouldn’t pronounce my name—and made a point of saying they wouldn’t try—but, interestingly, Inever felt underestimated or overlooked by them in court.
For me, the struggle was more about the lack of teamwork and leadership inherent in a self-employed profession—both of which Ifound mattered to
Access this article and thousands of others like it free by subscribing to our blog.
Read full article
Already a subscriber? Login
0330 161 1234