Mock trial held for gay cake scandal
London School of Economics (LSE) has held its first-ever moot for sexual orientation and gender identity.
The Department of Law witnessed 46 teams with more than 150 students compete in the contest, which created a legal problem around the current Ashers Bakery case currently at court in Northern Ireland.
Named after LGBT rights campaigner, Baroness Lynne Featherstone, the competition saw teams try to navigate the UK’s current equality legislation and was won by Oxford University.
“Many of the lawyers, judges and academics who have been involved with the mooting competition and the workshops over the last two days, already play key roles in the fight for LGBT equality,” Baroness Featherstone said in a speech that followed the competition.
“I was privileged enough to be able to advocate within parliament for social change and in particular, for the legalisation of same-sex marriage.
“These are all such important roles for the continued civilised development of our society, and I hope that many of you will be inspired by your involvement in this competition, to continue to help advance LGBT equality through representation or advisory work.”
She also joked that the cake which, due to a baking error, said ‘Lynne Featherstone sexual’ was the closest she’d come to sex in a long time.
Moots, which are a major part of legal education in universities, simulate a case as if it’s being argued in court.
A number of speakers and workshops also took place on the day.
The event was organised by Ollie Persey, a British LLM student who was inspired by a similar event in the States, and Andrew Scott, who helped to get LSE on board.
“Going forward, we hope that everybody competing is inspired to become more involved in sexual orientation and gender identity law,” said Ollie.
“Although this is a competition, the emphasis is on creating a fun and empowering forum for LGBT and ally law students, activists, practitioners, and members of the judiciary to network and to learn more about LGBT issues.”
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