In mid-2016, the Bar Council assumed responsibility for coordinating the delivery of specialist training for criminal advocates dealing with vulnerable witnesses. This followed the Ministry of Justice’s 2014 announcement that all publicly-funded criminal advocates appearing in serious sexual offence cases should undertake the training by the end of 2018. The Chair of the Bar chairs the working group responsible for ensuring the quality of training and reporting progress to the Ministry of Justice.
The 60 lead facilitators needed to roll out the training to the Bar, the Law Society and the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) were all successfully trained and in place by the end of 2016. Training of facilitators (which for the Bar is coordinated through the Circuits and Inns of Court) was well underway by Spring 2017. The ‘Advocacy and the Vulnerable’ courses will soon be widely available to all members of the criminal Bar, and the Bar Council is well on course to deliver on this commitment.
Contact and further information
The Bar Council
289-293 High Holborn