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Using our legal skills - pro bono

Using our legal skills – pro bono

Our lawyers use their skills to give free legal advice, research or representation for a social, community, humanitarian or environmental cause. Our litigation team in London works with the Royal Courts of Justice Advice Bureau to offer free legal advice to those who cannot afford a solicitor. In Paris our lawyers are working with Plastic Odyssey to develop a 3-year marine expedition to develop new local solutions to reduce plastic waste in emerging countries. Lawyers in Hong Kong work with Pathfinders who assist vulnerable children born in Hong Kong, and their migrant mothers to work towards safe, legal and sustainable futures.

Pro bono support for domestic helpers in Hong Kong

Our Hong Kong office provides legal and administrative support to PathFinders, a not-for-profit organisation that assists vulnerable children born in Hong Kong, and their migrant mothers to work towards safe, legal and sustainable futures. Case managers help mothers understand their legal rights and obligations, access critical services and support networks and empower them to make decisions which are centred on their children’s best interests.

In the space of three years we have provided free legal representation to a number of domestic helpers whose employment contracts were unlawfully terminated because they were pregnant, or whose employers have failed to pay them according to their employment rights. We are currently supporting a domestic helper, who was repeatedly raped by the husband of her employer, to pursue civil and criminal proceedings against both her employer and her husband when her employment was terminated after she became pregnant.

In addition to pro bono legal advice supporting Pathfinders clients to recover the damages owed to them, we have attracted media attention to the plight of domestic helpers in Hong Kong who have limited public support or protection.

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© Stephenson Harwood LLP 2016. Any reference to Stephenson Harwood in this document means Stephenson Harwood LLP and/or its affiliated undertakings. Any reference to a partner is used to refer to a member of Stephenson Harwood LLP.