Forty chambers, chosen on a geographically representative basis, will receive a phone call from a member of the BSB’s equality team. Chambers will be asked a series of questions on their implementation of the new rules. The call should take no more than 45 minutes.
The BSB consulted last year on a number of Code of Conduct rules aimed at promoting equality and diversity in the profession. The rules, which came into force in September 2012, include requirements to produce an equality policy and action plan and appoint an equality and diversity officer and diversity data officer. Chambers’ selection panels should be trained in fair recruitment; diversity monitored and data analysed; and policies produced for anti-harassment, flexible working, parental leave and reasonable adjustments.
Barristers are also being encouraged to update their diversity details as part of the practising certificate renewal process – the deadline for which is 31 March. See p 49.