Aug 28, 2019

Banks and law firms demand more female barristers

Barclays began asking all law firms on its panel - a selection of firms appointed annually to tackle the bank's legal work - to report diversity statistics to it last year. Clerks, who assign cases to barristers, said they were finally starting to feel the impact of these efforts and were increasingly able to challenge law firms that requested male barristers. "In the past, law firms have been more of a closed shop and work from a set list of barristers and it has been harder to make them deviate from that." Other efforts by law firms have included Freshfields launching a "Speed-networking" event in July for female barristers and the firm's male and female lawyers. Last year the bank collaborated on a networking event with Fountain Court chambers to introduce more barristers to its panel firms.

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