Bar­ris­ters’ din­ners ‘too elite’

The Daily Telegraph - - News - By Patrick Sawer

FOR cen­turies stu­dent bar­ris­ters have been din­ing at the hal­lowed Inns of Court along­side some of the most ex­pe­ri­enced lawyers in the coun­try.

Now, how­ever, the re­quire­ment for every stu­dent bar­ris­ter to dine at their cho­sen Inn of Court may be jet­ti­soned for be­ing too “in­tim­i­dat­ing, elit­ist, male and white” for them to cope with.

A con­sul­ta­tion pa­per is­sued by the Bar Stan­dards Board (BRB) to dis­cuss which of the prac­tices which reg­u­late a stu­dent’s pupil­lage should be dis­pensed with states: “Some stu­dents with less knowl­edge of the pro­fes­sion, par­tic­u­larly for those from BME and lower so­cio-eco­nomic back­grounds, may be more likely to feel in­tim­i­dated by the en­vi­ron­ment as they may per­ceive the ma­jor­ity of the bar­ris­ters at­tend­ing are white, male and ed­u­cated at elite in­sti­tu­tions.”

A BRB spokesman said: “We are re­view­ing all of our stu­dent train­ing re­quire­ments… There are some peo­ple who be­lieve pas­sion­ately that din­ing helps in­te­grate pupils and some who say it’s too stuffy and old-fash­ioned.”

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