ETHNIC DIVERSITY“Positive discrimination” is a term describing a practice which many find unacceptable. Indeed employers, organisations etc can go to great lengths to deny such a policy exists. But there is one positive thing that can be said about such a policy:- it is honest and transparent. That is certainly not how the latest statement from the Ministry of Justice on the appointment of judges could be described.

There are many reasons why ethnic minority lawyers are not represented in the judiciary to the extent their numbers would warrant. But in seeking diversity Kenneth Clarke seems to be including women who must balance family commitments with work. All this is dressed up in the language of civil service speak………”if two candidates are completely equal in their abilities, a selection can be made on the basis of improving diversity”. Presuming some sort of points system is employed for the final selection…….in itself a phrase with an ignominious history, eg how does a white woman available thirty hours weekly compare with a black man available full time or a blind Asian man with full time availability. The comparisons are endless and the practice odious.