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The Herald - SEMLA Launch

Ethnic minority lawyers group puts diversity at heart of profession

IN ITS most recent study on the demographics of the legal profession the Law Society of Scotland found, perhaps unsurprisingly, that ethnic minorities are under-represented.

The figures, which were last collated in 2013, show that while those from a black background make up one per cent of the population they account for less than one per cent of solicitors. Those from Asian backgrounds, meanwhile, make up three per cent of the population at large but just one per cent of the solicitors roll.

A small band of solicitors and advocates aims to change that.

Led by Usman Tariq, an advocate at Ampersand Stable, the Scottish Ethnic Minority Lawyers Association (Semla) is setting out to shatter perceptions that the law is closed off to people from non-white backgrounds.

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