The Brighton Legal Clinic was launched by Brontie Ansell, Senior Lecturer in the Brighton Business School, and will see law students give free advice to clients under the supervision of Brontie, other academics and local lawyers.
It is currently open on the last Tuesday of the month with plans to expand to once a week very soon. Booking is by prior appointment only at present. The clinic is based in Mithras House on the university’s Moulsecoomb campus.
Students on the third-year ‘Justice and Practice’ module will work in the clinic and be allocated clients, who they will then interview – under supervision – and provide advice to. Brontie will sit in on the vast majority of interviews with support from local barrister’s chambers 1 Crown Office Row, who are also sponsoring the clinic, and law firm Irwin Mitchell.
The students are involved in every aspect of running Brighton Legal Clinic, participating in management discussions and marketing tasks such as distributing print literature around Brighton and Hove.
Eventually the clinic aims to expand its reach to encompass legal issues such as: social welfare law, employment litigation, climate justice work (including pollution, planning and energy law), unlawful arrests at climate protests and gender discrimination cases.
Brontie said: “When I first started the project I worried about whether we’d have any clients, but as the year has gone on I have realised the need for good quality, free, well-supervised legal advice is immense in Brighton and Hove.