Victoria's newest barristers have tipped the gender balance with women readers outnumbering the men, 28 to 25.
Fifty-three Australian lawyers graduated from the Victorian Bar Readers course this month, increasing the Bar's intake to a total of 1863 and marking a steady increase in women joining the Bar.
In 2010 women make up 25 per cent of the practising Bar roll compared to only 17 per cent in 2000, and the proportion of women in the category of up to six years practice is now 42 per cent.
"It is particularly pleasing to see the increasing proportion of women at our Bar. The Victorian Bar has for some time been at the forefront nationally on this measure and we are very pleased to see this response to equality and diversity programs put in place by the Bar," said Victorian Bar Chairman Michael Colbran QC.
"Diversity at the Bar is an important goal and is recognised as essential to maintaining the appeal of the Bar as an option for all in the profession who want to pursue expert advocacy as a career path. The steadily changing gender balance is a marker of our Bar's ability to foster diversity."
Each of the 53 newest members of the Bar roll will spend the next six months sharing chambers with an experienced barrister.