InterLaw and JAC join forces to help LGBTs become judges

The InterLaw Diversity Forum for LGBT Networks has teamed up with the Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) to prime LGBT candidates on improving their chances of selection for a career in the judiciary.

The organisations will train those from sexual minorities interested in becoming judges on the selection process, the roles the JAC select for, choosing referees and selection days.

A survey carried out by InterLaw last year into judicial diversity found that many LGBT lawyers are keen to become judges, but are prevented from doing so through a combination of a lack of information and ­negative perceptions.

A third of respondents believe they have the skills and experience to become a judge and 43 per cent believe that being a judge would be enjoyable, but a third think that judicial appointments are not made solely on the basis of merit and 11 per cent argue that being LGBT would hold them back.

Sexual diversity on the bench has been a historical problem, with the prohibition of unmarried people from becoming judges persisting as a rule until 1991.