School of Social Sciences celebrate official opening of the Justice Hub
The School of Social Sciences is celebrating the opening of the Justice Hub, a network that includes our Legal Advice Clinics, Miscarriages of Justice Review Centre and cutting edge teaching and research within legal technology. The Justice Hub allows our students to lay their foundations with holistic, autonomous and reflective experiences.
The Justice Hub network began life over 20 years ago as the Legal Advice Centre (LAC), based within the Law School. The past 20 years have seen the arrival of new initiatives and centres, including our Dementia Law Clinic, The Miscarriage of Justice Review Centre and cutting edge teaching and research within our Legal Technology Initiative. Bringing these projects together through the Justice Hub network has given our students a space to lay their foundations with holistic, autonomous and reflective experiences, whilst making real change happen in the community. The official launch event was a chance to celebrate the hard work of students and colleagues throughout the years, whilst focusing on the bright future that lies ahead for our Justice Hub.
The event kicked off with speeches and presentations from staff, students and our guest speaker, Human Rights Barrister Anna Morris. Neil Allen, Law Academic and Barrister, began proceedings with a short history of the Justice Hub, beginning with the founding of the LAC in 1999 to provide free legal advice to those in need. Over the past 20 years, the LAC has grown to include a number of exciting new projects, all aimed at improving access to justice for the vulnerable, marginalised and disadvantaged. Professor Claire McGourlay discussed the difficulties faced by pro bono services following legal aid cuts over the last seven years; Claire praised the students for their commitment against these challenges as our Justice Hub continues to expand to meet increasing demands.
Anna Morris shared stories from her own journey into human rights law, citing the importance of voluntary experience for students seeking a future career in the legal sector. The presentations were wrapped up by three of our student volunteers who spoke about the knowledge and understanding they have gained from working in the Justice Hub alongside clients facing complex, and often sensitive, legal problems.
Outside the Justice Hubs new home at 188 Waterloo Place, Professor April McMahon, Vice President for Teaching and Learning, cut the ribbon across the door as all attendees were invited in to celebrate the evening with a drinks reception and a chance to look around the Hub.
"It is fantastic that the hugely innovative Justice Hub is now open. Through helping the marginalised and disadvantaged, learning within the Justice Hub encourages students to become holistic, autonomous and reflective thinkers of the future who challenge injustice and do not just accept the law as it is, but how it should be".