Centre for Access to Justice


Making Sense of Social Justice Lawyering

2:00 pm to 5:00 pm, 16 July 2018

Event Information

Open to





UCL Centre for Access to Justice and Law Centres Network


UCL Faculty of Laws Bentham House

Making sense of social justice lawyering

Lawyering for social justice makes sense to those who do it: using legal skills for a better world. But law, legal education, and the rules of lawyering do not easily accommodate this approach to legal practice, and are unsupportive if not hostile. Social justice lawyers pursue their calling in spite of, not aided by, the institutions of law. Professor Rice will ask and offer answers to a range of questions that seem central to the sustainability and effectiveness of lawyering for social justice: what makes a social justice lawyer? what does a social justice legal education look like? what does a social justice lawyer need to know? how do social justice lawyers practice? what are social justice lawyers' ethics? how do social justice lawyers achieve change?

Julie Bishop, Director of the Law Centres Network and Jacqui Kinghan, Head of Teaching and Learning at the UCL Centre for Access to Justice will contribute to a discussion following the Talk. We will situate our discussion within the current UK landscape for social justice lawyers considering, for example, the aftermath of cuts to legal aid, the under resourced justice system and wider pressures faced by the not for profit legal services sector.



2pm: Event Registration

The Hub, Bentham House

2:15-2:45: Making Sense of Social Justice Lawyering

Professor Simon Rice

2:45-3:45: Comments and Discussion

Jacqueline Kinghan and Julie Bishop

3:45-4:30: Reception and Refeshments

The Hub, Bentham House


About the Speaker

Simon Rice is a Professor of Law at the University of Sydney, and a solicitor on the volunteer roster at Redfern Legal Centre where he worked as a poverty lawyer in the mid-1980s. In between times, Simon has worked at, managed and consulted to a number of community legal centres in Australia, and has researched and written on legal aid and access to justice. He has been a board member of New South Wales (NSW) Legal Aid, director of the NSW Law and Justice Foundation, and chair of the Australian Capital Territory Law Reform Advisory Council. In the areas of human rights and equality law Simon has been president of Australian Lawyers for Human Rights, adviser to the parliamentary human rights scrutiny committee, and a judicial member of the tribunal deciding discrimination matters in NSW. His co-authored publications include Australian Anti-Discrimination and Equal Opportunity Law, and The International Law of Human Rights. 

For more information: https://sydney.edu.au/law/about/people/profiles/simon.rice.php