Daniel Holt, a member of the “Legally Disabled?” Research Reference Group is the subject of an article in Legal Cheek, discussing his determination to reach the Bar.
The focus groups consisted of a diverse range of disabled legal professionals with different backgrounds and at varying points in their careers, from newly graduated to retired. Some participants entered the legal profession with an impairment or health condition and some acquired an impairment later in their career.
Head over to Legal Cheek to see their article on our project so far:
Focus Groups around England and Wales
Focus Groups help us to understand the key issues impacting on disabled legal professionals and will shape the direction of our research.
Following a successful series of focus groups in 2017, we are delighted to announce further opportunities to take part in the research.
The 2018 Focus Groups for all disabled legal professionals will be:
Birmingham 12th February, 12.30 – 2pm
Cardiff 9th February, 1 – 2.30pm and 16th February, 2 – 3.30pm
Manchester 26th February 5 – 6.30pm
London (Barristers and Clerks only) 2nd and 19th February, 4.30pm – 6pm
These groups are crucial to help us to gain a better insight into the issues that you have faced throughout your career so that we can start to shape our research questions.
We will provide a number of prompts to stimulate discussion to explore the experiences of disabled people and people with health conditions (including mental health) across the legal profession.
- Focus Groups will be run in co-operation with the LDD
- Each session 1.5 hours maximum
- Groups of two to ten people
- Chatham House Rules – confidentiality respected
- Held in accessible venues around England and Wales
- All focus groups facilitated by disabled people
What happens next?
There are a number of key stages to the development of the research, all of which will happen in equal partnership (co-production) with disabled legal professionals.
The project has established a Research Reference Group consisting of only disabled legal professionals and the two key researchers. This group supports the researchers with designing and delivering the research. Data has been collected through a number of focus groups and we will shortly begin one to one interviews. When analysis of the interviews is complete we will distribute a large-scale survey. At all stages, the aim is for disabled people to lead the way.
September 2017 marked the launch of an exciting new research project, “Legally Disabled? The career experiences of disabled people in the legal profession in England & Wales: developing future strategies.”
Prof Debbie Foster and Dr Natasha Hirst formally launched the “Legally Disabled” research project at the September executive meeting of the Lawyers with Disabilities Division (LDD) at the Law Society in London.
The project has been given huge support and the great enthusiasm of project partners at the LDD has helped the project get off to the best possible start.
The research is funded by the DRILL Programme (Disability Research into Independent Living and Learning), a four nations project providing grants across the UK for research designed and delivered in co-production between disabled people and academics or researchers.
With Cardiff University as the lead on this 18-month project, all researchers on the project are disabled people and the key project partner, the LDD, consists of disabled lawyers. The research will be investigating the barriers and solutions for disabled people across the legal profession.
The Lawyers with Disabilities Division (Law Society) have been key partners in the development of the project which aims to co-produce research with disabled legal professionals. We are continuing to seek the involvement of other groups across the legal profession.
For further information on disability research undertaken at Cardiff University, take a look at the Disability and Employment blog.