More UK barristers experience harassment

The increase is concerning, the Bar Council says

More UK barristers experience harassment

More and more barristers in the UK are experiencing bullying, a new study has found.

Among 4,092 usable responses from barristers surveyed by The Bar Council, 21% of employed and 12% of self-employed barristers said they have been harassed or bullied in the last two years, The Law Society Gazette reported. This is an increase of 3% for employed barristers and 5% for self-employed barristers from the 2013 survey of the representative body of barristers in England and Wales.

Among the respondents, 53% said that gender was the reason for unfavourable treatment, up 5% from the previous survey. Those in criminal practice experienced more harassment or bullying (18%), compared to those in chancery and commercial practice (8%).

“The results are a cause for concern and cannot be ignored. As a profession, we must do much better. We do not and will not tolerate harassment and bullying at the bar,” said Andrew Walker QC, chair of The Bar Council.

“The Bar Council already offers a confidential helpline, training and other support to individuals and chambers. If any members of the Bar are facing harassment or being bullied, we urge them to use these services,” he said.


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