Associate, Julia Wookey shares her insight as part of our Women in Law campaign.
The environment at the Saturday morning clinics is slightly different from the midweek free legal advice clinics which we also support. Toynbee Hall has worked hard to create a space which feels emotionally and physically safe for women who wouldn’t otherwise attend the free legal advice centre. As a result, the clients are emboldened and supported to seek out the legal advice they need. Crucially, they feel safe to disclose relevant details that the lawyers require so that they can give them the best possible advice and assistance.
Howard Kennedy's main ethos when it comes to pro bono is to make sure that the advice and assistance we deliver is of the same high quality that our fee paying clients receive. Advising in the unique environment of the women only free legal advice clinic means that we can be confident that we are achieving that goal for those specific clients.
For a variety of reasons, sometimes personal and sometimes cultural, the clients wouldn’t attend the free advice clinics if there were men present or if their consultation would be with a male solicitor. This creates a crucial resource enabling access to justice for women who otherwise wouldn’t seek it out.
I feel extremely proud to volunteer at Toynbee Hall and proud to be a female lawyer. Particularly on a Saturday, and especially when I look around and see other women lawyers from Howard Kennedy helping other women alongside me.
Want to know more, please visit Toynbee Hall’s Free Legal Advice Centre here.