As the regulator of the Bar of England and Wales, we have a statutory regulatory objective to “encourage an independent, strong, diverse and effective legal profession” (The Legal Services Act 2007). We also have obligations under the Equality Act 2010.
We aim to ensure meaningful compliance with our equality duties in every aspect of our work, to demonstrate best equalities and anti-discrimination practice, and to embed equality and fairness into the day-to-day running of our organisation.
To meet this core aim, we work hard to ensure that:
- equality and diversity are embedded into all aspects of our work, through our Equality Objectives, our Strategic Plan and our Risk Outlook;
- equality and diversity training is provided to all of our staff, our committee members and our board members;
- Equality Impact Analyses (EIAs) are conducted on our new and current policies and EIA training is delivered to our staff;
- our recruitment procedures demonstrate best equality and diversity practice;
- our Equality Rules apply evenly and fairly to the people we regulate;
- we have an in depth understanding of the diversity profile of the profession we regulate – read our research and statistics on equality and diversity;
- we promote diversity in the profession across all areas of practice, regions and levels of seniority.
In June 2022, together with The Legal Services Board and seven other legal services regulators and two disciplinary tribunals, we reaffirmed our commitment to taking action to ensure more inclusive workplaces for lawyers and that the profession better reflects the society and consumers it serves.
In 2022, following a consultation with our Race Equality Taskforce, we published a paper on the BSB approach to racial terminology, available here.
We are a signatory to the new principles – Tackling counter-inclusive misconduct through disciplinary processes (PDF) – acknowledging that while there have been some improvements in diversity and inclusion, much more work is needed.
In October 2022 we published our Wellbeing Statement.
Our Equality and Diversity strategy
Our Equality and Diversity strategy sets out how we will deliver on our commitment to improve diversity and inclusion in the barrister profession and our workforce.
Our Equality and Diversity Strategy is relevant to anyone who uses our services or works with us including members of the public, prospective or practising barristers and chambers staff.
Our Equality Objectives
We publish our Equality Objectives and review them annually, to satisfy our obligations under the Equality Act 2010 (Specific Duties Regulations), which requires us to pay due regard to the need to:
- eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation;
- advance equality of opportunity between different groups; and
- foster good relations between different groups.
Our Equality Objectives seek to:
- analyse the effectiveness of our Equality Rules;
- ensure that our equality work has a reliable evidence base;
- ensure that equality and diversity is an integral part of our approach to regulation; and
- engage with a wide range of communities to inform our regulatory functions and our Equality and Access to Justice Programme.
We are committed to ensuring that our services are accessible to those with disabilities and we are a “Disability Confident” employer. View our Reasonable Adjustments Policy.
To learn more about our approach to equality and diversity, contact our Equality and Access to Justice Team on [email protected] or 020 7611 1305.
If you are a barrister or other legal professional and wish to learn about our equality rules visit our section on compliance with your obligations under the Equality Rules.