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Blogs

Our blogs share the perspectives and views of our members, volunteers and staff on issues relating to the magistracy and wider justice system. We also publish guest pieces from organisations with fresh perspectives on relevant topics. Use the search box or filters to find what you're looking for.

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The text reads: member blog, Maz Edwards. It is accompanied by Maz's photo.
  • Diversity, disparity and inclusion

Gender identity and the magistracy

As we approach the end of Pride month, Maz Edwards shares her experience of being a Trans female magistrate and reflects on the importance of a truly inclusive judiciary.
Text reads: member blog, Dane Pedro. It is accompanied by Dane's photo.
  • Diversity, disparity and inclusion
  • Practicalities of being a magistrate

A decade on the bench

This Volunteers’ Week, we invited one of our members, Dane Pedro, who has been serving as a magistrate for nearly a decade, to reflect on her time as a female magistrate.
The text reads member blog, Christopher Walker. It is accompanied by Christopher's photo.
  • Family court matters
  • Practicalities of being a magistrate

Be the difference: volunteer as a magistrate

For Volunteers’ Week, one of our members, Christopher Walker, shares his journey to the bench and encourages others to apply to become magistrates.
The text reads: member blog, Sarah Sawyerr. It is accompanied by Sarah's photo.
  • Diversity, disparity and inclusion

Diversity and inclusion: What we’ve been doing, and how to get involved

Sarah Sawyerr, diversity and inclusion committee representative for our Black, Asian and minority ethnic network, shares a round-up of the committee’s and networks’ recent work.
  • Diversity, disparity and inclusion

Neurodiversity Celebration Week: Understanding ADHD

For Neurodiversity Celebration Week (18–24 March 2024), we're sharing an article by MA member Hanne Van Hirtum JP, who tells us about her experience of having ADHD and offers advice on supporting neurodivergent defendants and magistrates
The text reads: member blog, Josh James. It is accompanied by Josh's photo.
  • Diversity, disparity and inclusion

Championing diversity as a trustee

To mark Trustees’ Week, Josh James JP looks back on a year in post and explores how diversity strengthens our decision making.
  • Practicalities of being a magistrate

An interview with Marianne Sunter

This month we sat down with Marianne Sunter, a new(ish) adult court magistrate, to find out more about her experience on the bench and what tips she has for newly appointed recruits.
  • Practicalities of being a magistrate

My 25-year voluntary career

To mark Black History Month, Abiola Onatade shares why she’s been giving back to her community by volunteering as a magistrate for over two decades.
The text reads: member blog, Yvonne Watkins-Knight. It is accompanied by Yvonne's photo.
  • Adult court matters
  • Practicalities of being a magistrate

A day in the life of an adult court magistrate

To mark Black History Month, Yvonne Watkins-Knight offers a glimpse into what a typical day giving back to her community as a magistrate looks like.
The text reads: member blog, Des Smith. It is accompanied by Des' photo.
  • Diversity, disparity and inclusion

Four decades on the bench

To mark Black History Month, Des Smith, one of our retired members, takes stock of his four-decade-long contribution to administering justice in his community.
The text reads: member interview, Anthony Fitzgerald. It is accompanied by Anthony's photo.
  • Diversity, disparity and inclusion

An interview with Anthony Fitzgerald

This month we sat down with Anthony Fitzgerald, a new magistrate who is LGBT+, to find out more about his experience on the bench and why he encourages people from underrepresented groups to apply for the role.
The text reads: member blog, Sara Pye. It is accompanied by Sara's photo.
  • Family court matters

Support for family magistrates

Sara Pye, Deputy Chair of our family court committee, updates on the committee's efforts to ensure that family magistrates receive the support they need when dealing with distressing cases.
The text reads member blog, Charlotte Wassermann. It is accompanied by Charlotte's photo.
  • Diversity, disparity and inclusion

Sitting in court with a hidden disability

Charlotte Wassermann shares her experience of being a magistrate with an invisible disability and sheds light on the types of adjustments that can make the role more accessible for people with hidden disabilities.
  • Diversity, disparity and inclusion

An interview with Rish McDonald

For Pride month, we sat down with Rish McDonald, an LGBT+ member who has just been elected to sit on our newly established diversity and inclusion policy committee, to find out more about his journey to the bench and why he believes an inclusive magistracy is so important.

An interview with Alison Allard

This month we sat down with one of our members, Alison Allard, to find out more about her experience on the bench and what she does outside of volunteering as a magistrate.
The text reads: member blog, Paul Nielsen. It is accompanied by Paul's photo.
  • Diversity, disparity and inclusion

Dealing with hearing loss in a court environment

To mark Deaf Awareness Week, Paul Nielsen shares his experience as a magistrate with hearing loss and gives some advice on how other magistrates can support colleagues and other court users who are hearing impaired.

An interview with Sarah Butters

Our branches play a crucial role in educating the public about the magistracy via our Magistrates in the Community initiative. We sat down with Sarah Butters, who coordinates this programme in Leeds, to find out more about what motivates her and the advice she would give to first time presenters.
  • Practicalities of being a magistrate

A year (and counting) on the bench

Alexa Halabi, one of our Muslim members, shares her journey to the bench and looks back on her first year as a magistrate.
  • Diversity, disparity and inclusion
  • Practicalities of being a magistrate

Navigating potholes to realise a goal

To mark LGBT+ history month, recently appointed LGBT+ magistrate Jason Callender shares his journey to the bench and reflects on contributing to building a more diverse magistracy.
  • Diversity, disparity and inclusion

Gender-neutrality in the magistracy

For LGBT+ history month, Viljo Wilding JP shares their experience of being a non-binary magistrate and reflects on the importance of a truly inclusive judiciary.
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