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Statistics show women still under-represented in the judiciary

26 July 2017

The senior president of tribunals, Sir Ernest Ryder, and lord chief justice Lord Thomas have published the judicial diversity figures for the courts and tribunals as at 1 April.

The figures showed that women are still under-represented in the judiciary with only 890 court judges (28 per cent) and 806 tribunal judges (45 per cent) being female. In the high court, 21 out of 97 judges (22 per cent) were female, and in the court of appeal nine out of 38 judges (24 per cent) were female. Fourteen of the 66 deputy high court judges (22 per cent) were women.

One encouraging statistic was growth in the younger judiciary gender diversity, as almost half of all court judges (49 per cent) and just under two-thirds of tribunal judges (62 per cent) aged under 40 were female.

However, some regions have lower female representation. The percentage of female court judges was highest in the south east (36 per cent) and lowest in the south west (21 per cent).

The percentage of non-barristers working as judges has decreased from 37 per cent to 34 per cent.

The Law Society's Women Lawyers Division commends Lady Justice Hallett, chair of the Judicial Diversity Committee, for her work in improving diversity. We will continue to work with the committee to improve gender diversity and encourage solicitors to apply for judicial vacancies.


Comment from Catherine Slattery, solicitor and committee member of the Women Lawyers Division.

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