Two in five female barristers have been harassed at the Bar

Two out of every five female barristers have experienced harassment at the Bar, a new report claims today.

The Bar Standards Board’s report Women at the Bar, revealed harassment has remained a common occurrence even since the Equality Act was introduced in 2010, though things have got significantly better.

Some 20 per cent of women barristers have experienced harassment in the five years since the equality rules were introduced, compared to 57 per cent beforehand.

One third of women barristers under four years call had experienced harassment at some point, compared with around half of those of more than 20 years call.

The majority of those who had experienced harassment – 80.3 per cent – did not report it.

Of those who did report harassment, around half were satisfied with how it was dealt with. Among those who were left unsatisfied, several felt the response from the Bar Council or Bar Standards Board was inadequate.

The report also revealed that 45 per cent of women said they had experienced discrimination at the Bar; however, almost 70 per cent felt their chambers’ work environment was “supportive and fair.”

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