Lawyers with disabilities

Legal profession celebrates Disability History Month

Solicitors in England and Wales will celebrate Disability History Month by sharing the perspectives of disabled legal professionals; highlighting their experiences, achievements and challenges; and raising awareness of disability rights, equality and inclusion.

Law Society president I. Stephanie Boyce said: “We will be sharing stories of issues affecting disabled legal professionals throughout November and December. I wholeheartedly encourage my disabled colleagues to share their stories and experiences so we can celebrate their achievements and raise awareness of the challenges they face.

“It is almost two years since we launched the Legally Disabled? research report on the career experiences of disabled people with Cardiff Business School and a year since we published follow-up research on disabled lawyers’ experiences during the pandemic.*

“Based on the research, we developed some easy wins and action points for disability inclusion in firms with our Lawyers with Disabilities Division, which included questions to get discussions going and starting points for further work.

“The Legally Disabled? report found clear evidence that disability has been largely overlooked when it comes to improving diversity and inclusion (D&I) in the solicitors’ profession.

“In response to this, we have published reasonable adjustments guidance for firms and organisations to help them recruit and employ disabled staff. The aim is to improve awareness of the legal requirement and to give practical ideas on how best to implement adjustments, challenging assumptions on what is possible.

“It is important for employers to approach discussions with their disabled employees positively and constructively. The Legally Disabled? research highlighted how stressful and demoralising it is for disabled people within the legal profession constantly to have to ask for and justify the adjustments they need.

“The conversation is still continuing around the experiences of our disabled colleagues and I am bringing together leaders of various organisations to check what they’ve done since the Legally Disabled? research was published.

“I very much look forward to celebrating Disability History Month and I look forward to hearing the stories of my disabled colleagues in the profession.”

Notes to editors

*Read the 2020 report: Legally Disabled? – The career experiences of disabled people working in the legal profession

Read about UK Disability History Month 2021

Read our easy wins and action points for disability inclusion

Read our reasonable adjustments in organisations’ guidance

About the Law Society

The Law Society is the independent professional body that works globally to support and represent solicitors, promoting the highest professional standards, the public interest and the rule of law.

Press office contact: Naomi Jeffreys | 020 8049 3928

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