Debt fear factor
I am surprised that the Solicitors Regulation Authority thinks that removal of the minimum salary will improve opportunities for those from lower socio-economic backgrounds.
Contrary to popular middle-class opinion, debt is a huge fear factor for most from this stratum of society. Yet we are asking the profession of tomorrow to incur large debts in attending university, and even larger debts for completing the LPC (for which there will be even fewer grants/bursaries/scholarships than are available for undergraduates), with no prospect of earning a viable wage at the end of the process. Lowering the trainee salary will in turn have the effect of lowering the newly qualified solicitor salary in all but the large City firms.
I note that the current SRA board has only one representative from what might be classed as a ‘high street firm’, which is of course where the minimum wage is generally applied, while the education and training committee of the SRA has none. Where is the regulator’s diversity?
Diane Parker , training principal, Atherton Godfrey, Doncaster