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‘IT’S TIME TO OCCUPY THE INNS OF COURT’

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Jobless law graduates should follow the St Paul’s protesters’ example, argues OccupyTheInns

As the Occupy Wall Street camp is cleared, and the City of London commences legal action against the Occupy London protesters, why am I proposing the occupation of the Inns of Court? Simple. Because I, and many law graduates like me, are angry. As we have seen in Egypt, New York and at home in London, anger can be a great energiser.

Through no fault of our own, a generation of Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC) and Legal Practice Course (LPC) graduates find ourselves with no jobs – or no jobs as lawyers anyway. The lucky ones are paralegals. The unlucky ones work in bars (not the Bar).

This generation did all that was required of it, and in many cases much more. We obtained A-stars and high 2.1s from the best Russell Group universities. We undertook all the extracurricular activities that we were told prospective lawyers need to have on their CVs nowadays.

For my sins, I chose to become a barrister, and so did the BPTC. The Bar has always been a dream of mine; in order to promote justice, to help those from less fortunate backgrounds than myself, to pursue an intellectually stimulating career. Those were, and still are, my aims.

As I mentioned above, I have a high 2.1 from a leading Russell Group university, where I read a challenging non-law subject. Also, without wishing to sound arrogant in any way, I am very able as an advocate (something reflected in my BPTC grades and the success I have enjoyed at mooting competitions).

Yet a pupillage remains out of my, and many of my contemporaries’, grasp. The statistics are frightening. Approaching 2,000 students do the BPTC every year, but just over 400 obtain pupillage. Those are not far off National Lottery odds!

It is for these reasons that I propose peaceful direct action. It is time to occupy the Inns of Court. To those of you reading this in my position, please get in touch, by Twitter (@OccupyTheInns), by email (occupytheinns@hotmail.co.uk ) or by commenting beneath this article.

OccupyTheInns graduated from the BPTC this summer, and was called to the Bar in July.

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