SPBG supports ethics woman

Marlene Winfield of the National Consumer Council makes an important point in recognising the need for an ethical element to legal education (The Lawyer, 28 July). She also rightly acknowledges the business and professional reasons for recognising the balance between law as a business and as a profession.

The Solicitors Pro Bono Group has always argued identical points. Backing from a major consumer organisation is welcome. Support for our cause has come from speakers ranging from the Lord Chief Justice, Lord Bingham, to representatives from the advice and voluntary sector.

There is also support from those educating the profession, notably the College of Law, whose professor of professional development has, with this group, invited representatives from large firms to discuss establishing a pro bono elective in the Professional Skills Course and whose chief executive has called for law schools to recognise the importance of ethics.

The time has come to rethink the role solicitors play in the community. The Law Society has an opportunity to do so in regulating the profession's training requirements.

Peta Sweet, director

Solicitors Pro Bono Group