Legal workers union seeks to unify the profession

Legal workers are being urged to join a single trade union aimed at unifying the profession, with Michael Mansfield QC among senior lawyers who have endorsed the initiative. Legal Sector Workers United (LSWU), a new branch of the United Voices of the World union, is looking to bring together paralegals, solicitors, barristers, receptionists, interns, personal assistants, administrative staff, cleaners and security guards. Mr Mansfield comments: “I was involved in an earlier effort in the 1970s which was far less ambitious and did not survive. This has the advantage of a far wider constituency of workers who are constantly at risk of exploitation and marginalisation.” Lucie Wibberley, a criminal defence barrister at Garden Court Chambers, said: “With the arrival of LSWU, as part of the trade union movement, we see a new generation of lawyers – determined to protect legal aid and all it stands for”, while Franck Magennis, a barri ster at Garden Court, said: “We need to create a union that unites people in different parts of the profession.”

The Guardian, Page: 24

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