chapter  14
16 Pages

Three models of diversity

ByErika Rackley, Charlie Webb

There are more women, BAME and openly gay judges than ever before and, particularly at the lower levels, more judges who have not taken the standard public school-Oxbridge-Bar route since the Judicial Appointments Commission (JAC) started overseeing the appointments process. This chapter explores several leading arguments for judicial diversity and the sort of diversity they support. For many years now, successive Lord Chancellors, senior judges, civil servants, parliamentarians, academics and, more recently, the JAC have acknowledged the importance of ensuring greater diversity among our judges. The equality of opportunity argument holds that judicial appointment should be open to all able to do the job well. A second argument for judicial diversity is grounded in the importance of the judiciary being democratically legitimate. A final argument for diversity considers the difference a diverse judiciary might make to how cases are decided.