REDRESS is seeking Legal Fellowship applications from excellent graduates, postgraduates and individuals in the early stages of their careers with a strong background in international human rights law to contribute to REDRESS’s work in either London or The Hague.
REDRESS is an international human rights organisation that represents victims of torture in obtaining justice and reparations. We bring legal cases in a range of international courts and tribunals on behalf of individual survivors, and advocate for better laws to provide effective reparations. Our cases respond to torture as an individual crime in domestic and international law, as a civil wrong with individual responsibility, and as a human rights violation with State responsibility.
Through our survivor-centred approach to strategic litigation we can have an impact beyond the individual case to address the root causes of torture and to challenge impunity. We apply our expertise in the law of torture, reparations, and the rights of victims, to conduct research and advocacy to identify the necessary changes in law, policy, and practice. We work collaboratively with international and national organisations, lawyers, advocates, activists and grassroots victims’ groups.
REDRESS’ five programmes of work are: Justice, Reparation, Discrimination, Dissent, and Solidarity.
About the Fellowships
Legal Fellows at REDRESS are exposed to all aspects of working at a human rights organisation. The work typically includes:
- Undertaking legal research at the national, regional and international level;
- Developing policy positions and drafting legal and policy reports;
- Developing advocacy strategies and drafting advocacy briefings;
- Networking and attending meetings with high-level stakeholders;
- Drafting submissions before regional or international courts and UN mechanisms;
- Organising events, including litigation workshops;
- Assisting with fundraising and communications work; and
- Administrative tasks as required.
In addition, fellows sometimes have the opportunity to be involved in casework, but this cannot be guaranteed. As REDRESS is a relatively small organisation, fellows take an active role in all aspects of our work and have the opportunity to get fully involved in our projects, supported by REDRESS staff. Fellows are treated as valued members of the team and make a meaningful contribution to REDRESS’ work.
Examples of tasks undertaken by previous fellows include:
- Drafting legal/policy submissions to government seeking the imposition of human rights sanctions on perpetrators of human rights abuses;
- Drafting legal/policy briefings on international human rights;
- Researching and drafting published blogs;
- Conducting trainings and presentations on human rights accountability mechanisms for NGOs;
- Meeting with victims, high-level government representatives, and UN Special Procedures Mandate Holders; and
- Drafting witness statements and legal submissions to UN Special Procedures mechanisms and human rights courts;
Qualifications and experience
The following are essential:
- A qualification in law (this can be an LL.B, LL.M or J.D).
- An LL.M or strong background in human rights
- Strong research
- Fluency in
- Strong drafting skills in
- Strong organisational skills.
- An ability to work independently with minimal
- A demonstrable commitment to the rights of victims of human rights abuses.
The following are desirable:
- Knowledge of and/or experience in the functioning of international human rights treaty bodies and UN
- Knowledge of and/or experience in the functioning of regional mechanisms including the Inter-American system or the African system.
- Knowledge of and/or experience in the functioning of the ICC.
- Knowledge of international criminal
- Previous experience working on torture
- Good knowledge of languages other than English, in particular Arabic, French, Spanish or Dutch.
Duration and Start Dates
Fellowships are full-time and typically last a maximum of one year and a minimum of four months. Fellowships at REDRESS usually start in September, but we will also consider applications for January or March.
Legal Fellowships at REDRESS are unpaid. Legal Fellows must have funding to cover the full costs of the fellowship from a university, college, professional training programme, regional or national government or another institutional source of funding. REDRESS has previously hosted Legal Fellows funded through Harvard, Columbia, Berkeley and other universities.
Unfortunately, we are not able to consider applications from self-funded candidates.
Experienced applicants without such funding are asked to apply instead for REDRESS’s separate Visiting Professional Programme (depending on experience). More details are available here.
For Fellows working from the UK REDRESS office, REDRESS is able to provide a certificate to sponsor a temporary-charity worker role, although the candidate would need to make the application themselves and cover any costs involved to apply for a Tier 5 VISA. For REDRESS Netherlands, REDRESS can apply for a governmental residence permit application, but candidates will need to cover the costs to apply.
How to apply
If you would like to be considered please send an email to [email protected]. The email should:
- include “Legal Fellowship application” in the subject heading;
- indicate your available start date and proposed length of the Fellowship;
- specify if you have a preference for a particular office (London or The Hague);
- specify what source of funding you have;
- your CV;
- a brief covering letter highlighting your key skills (up to 2 pages); and
- a writing sample, for example a university essay or piece of recent work that you are able to share with us (up to 5 pages).
Applications can be received on a rolling basis.
Interviews will take place in late October and early December 2023. If you need to interview outside of these dates, please note this in the application and provide reasons.
Equal Opportunity Policy
REDRESS is committed to ensuring impartiality and equality of opportunity. We will not discriminate when selecting candidates for Fellowships. REDRESS will ensure that each candidate is assessed only in accordance with the candidate’s merits, qualification and ability to perform the relevant duties required and against fair skills criteria.
REDRESS expects everyone to respect the rights of the individual to enjoy a workplace free from prejudice, harassment and discrimination. REDRESS encourages disclosure of disability by candidates to the Fellowship Programme without prejudice. We believe this information enables staff to ensure that health and safety issues are considered and offers the opportunity to explore any additional needs applicants may have. All information will remain confidential to the REDRESS team.