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Sexual Diversity in the Judiciary in England and Wales; Research on Barriers to Judicial Careers
School of Law, Birkbeck College, University of London, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HX, UK
Received: 24 October 2013; in revised form: 14 December 2013 / Accepted: 15 December 2013 / Published: 18 December 2013
Abstract: Debates about the diversity of the judiciary in the UK have been dominated by gender, race and ethnicity. Sexuality is notable by its absence and is perceived to pose particular challenges. It is usually missing from the list of diversity categories. When present, its appearance is nominal. One effect of this has been a total lack of official data on the sexual composition of the judiciary. Another is the gap in research on the barriers to the goal of a more sexually diverse judiciary. In 2008 the Judicial Appointment Commission (JAC) for England and Wales undertook research to better understand the challenges limiting progress towards judicial diversity. A central gaol of the project was to investigate barriers to application for judicial appointment across different groups defined by “sex, ethnicity and employment status”. Sexual orientation was again noticeable by its absence. Its absence was yet another missed opportunity to recognise and take seriously this strand of diversity. This study is based on a response to that absence. A stakeholder organisation, InterLaw Diversity Forum for lesbian gay bisexual and transgender networks in the legal services sector, with the JAC’s approval, used their questionnaire and for the first time asked lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender lawyers about the perceptions and experiences of barriers to judicial appointment. This paper examines the findings of that unique research and considers them in the light of the initial research on barriers to judicial appointment and subsequent developments.
Keywords: Judiciary; judicial diversity; judicial career; judicial appointment; sexual orientation; lesbian; gay; sexual diversity; Judicial Appointments Commission
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MDPI and ACS Style
Moran, L.J. Sexual Diversity in the Judiciary in England and Wales; Research on Barriers to Judicial Careers. Laws 2013, 2, 512-538.
Moran LJ. Sexual Diversity in the Judiciary in England and Wales; Research on Barriers to Judicial Careers. Laws. 2013; 2(4):512-538.
Moran, Leslie J. 2013. "Sexual Diversity in the Judiciary in England and Wales; Research on Barriers to Judicial Careers." Laws 2, no. 4: 512-538.