Ethnic minority lawyers hit national levels

The proportion of practising solicitors from ethnic minorities now matches that of the national population, according to the latest figures from the Law Society.

The societys Annual Statistical Report shows that the percentage of practising solicitors in England and Wales from ethnic minorities increased from 7 per cent in 2002 to 7.9 per cent last year. This figure is in line with the UK population as a whole, according to the Office for National Statistics.

The report states that 17 per cent of new entrants to the profession in 2003 came from ethnic minorities more than one in six. More than half (54.3 per cent) of the solicitors from ethnic minorities holding practising certificates work in London.

The report also shows that women now account for 39.7 per cent of solicitors with practising certificates. Thisfigurehasmore than doubled in the past decade.

Meanwhile, the Law Society has awarded 14 scholarships to talented law students under its new Diversity Access Scheme. The scheme was launched last year to help talented people overcome obstacles that may prevent them achieving their ambition of becoming a solicitor.