International Women’s Day 2023


Chambers’ immigration and public law team celebrated International Women’s Day on 8th March 2023 and continued into the week. As part of this, the team showcased its female members’ achievements, together with some useful resources highlighting how crucial it is to integrate and be mindful of the woman’s perspective in our work.

The first such perspective shared on the team’s social media platform is from Baroness Hamwee, Chair of the House of Lords’ Justice and Home Affairs Committee. The Committee’s Family Migration report was published on 28th February 2023 and you can read this here. To mark IWD this year, Baroness Hamwee told the team’s Joint-Heads Samina Iqbal and Sarah Pinder:

“Women have many places to be – one of them is with her family, if she’s lucky enough to be a part of a loving family. But the UK’s family migration policies too often make this impossible. The Lords Justice and Home Affairs Committee has recently published All families matter; an enquiry into family migration in which we call on the Government to put humanity and decency at the heart of family migration policy.”

The second perspective is from Emma Harris, a senior practitioner in Chambers’ civil and immigration and public law teams. Emma has written an article published by Counsel magazine: ‘Parental leave planning for the self-employed’. Emma, who has recently started a period of parental leave, shares her experiences of trying to plan for the same. Not an easy feat and one that many women at the Bar will recognise – so do delve in to check what tips Emma might have. You can access the article here. She covers practical aspects such as financial support and other such considerations, as well as how to maintain good communications with your instructing solicitors, clerking team and much more!

The team’s third perspective for International Women’s Day is an article written by Julian Norman, a senior practitioner in the immigration and public law team: “International Women’s Day and the Refugee Convention”. In this article, Julian explores that while it is absolutely true that in 2023 there is much to celebrate in terms of the strides in women’s progress over the last century, it is also worth considering the particular challenges that face women refugees. Julian highlights that refugee women tend to have less economic, social and personal freedom than men and that even if they are able to overcome those challenges to seek asylum in the UK, there may be further difficulties in establishing their claim, because women often have atypical claims. For a snapshot of those challenges, do read Julian’s article, which you can access here.

It is of course only possible to showcase a few perspectives to mark International Women’s Day. The challenges that women face today remain multiple and complex. The countless achievements that women reach are also to be celebrated so on behalf of the immigration and public law team: Happy International Women’s Day 2023!


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