The Justice First Fellowship Scheme was established by the Legal Education Foundation to support the next generation of students committed to public interest and social justice issues who want to pursue a career in social welfare law.
We are thrilled to announce that the Greater Manchester Law Centre are able to offer a training contract over 2 years, as a host organisation for the Justice First Fellowship scheme.
Applications will open in mid-August. Applicants will need to have passed the Legal Practice Course (LPC) prior to applying for this role. The training contract will last for two years, and will commence in January 2020. Further details will be published on our website in the coming weeks.
Why social welfare law?
When we began as a campaign against legal aid cuts law centre closures, we declared our commitment to practising in the areas of law where marginalised groups and people in poverty are disproportionately targeted. We have been open to the public for three years, providing a welcoming face-to-face service and legal advice. Young social welfare lawyers have few places to practise. The people most in need of legal representation are least likely to be able to find – or afford – a lawyer.
We have represented homeless people resisting eviction from a hostel and battling to enforce their rights to accommodation from the Council, we have fought alongside tenants taking on rogue landlords, and we have recovered over £1.5 million for people wrongly denied benefits. We stood alongside our local ‘Windrush’ community against the hostile environment. Our principles guide the work that we do.
Campaigning for change
While we work with individuals, we have to challenge the policies which produce the hardships they and many others are facing in the first place. That is why we set out our purpose in our recently launched manifesto “Fighting Together for Free Access to Justice” promoting both challenges to government policy and improvements to advice and representation needed to make legal aid a reality and to empower those who are most affected.
The next generation of social welfare lawyers
This training contract is an exciting opportunity for an aspiring solicitor with a passion for free access to justice. We will not allow legal aid cuts to be the death of the social welfare lawyer: we know that to effectively restore legal aid, we must develop and retain legal expertise in social welfare law, and the next generation of lawyers to keep up the fight.
Applications will open in mid-August.
Applicants will need to have passed the Legal Practice Course (LPC) prior to applying for this role.
Further details will be published on our website in the coming weeks.