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Education

Fair Work and Equality Law Clinic

Amsterdam Law Clinics

Fair Work and Equality Law Clinic

The Fair Work and Equality Law Clinic is an initiative of students and staff of the Amsterdam Law School and provides legal services on all questions related to social rights, labour exploitation and equality law.

In the Fair Work and Equality Law Clinic students will acquire knowledge to be able to build up a solid case. Clinic students will be directly involved in providing legal advice on international and national labour law, equality law, and economic and social rights with the aim to remedy violations of fundamental labour rights and economic and social rights.

The Clinic offers pro bono services to a variety of organizations as well as individual clients on questions of labour law and equality law.

The clinic encourages students’ critical thinking about the functions of law in society and its possibility to make positive changes especially in relation to labour rights, equality law and economic and social rights.

Marlies Vegter - Clinical Lecturer Fair Work and Equality Law Clinic
Copyright: FdR
The clinic is especially interesting for students with a big heart who work together to improve the rights of workers to equal treatment and the right to fair work. Marlies Vegter - Clinical Lecturer Fair Work and Equality Law Clinic

Teamwork and a hands-on approach

Top students in their final years of study at the Amsterdam Law School carry out research in teams at the Clinic. They are closely supervised by members of the Faculty, among others from the Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies, AIAS-HSI. They receive intensive, hands-on, guidance on how to conduct legal research, and how to write a legal opinion for external clients Emphasis is placed on professionalism, high quality work, teamwork, and respect for confidentiality.

Clinical work

Clinical work consists of projects undertaken for clients for which the students conduct legal research, provide legal advice and draft legal documents. The clinical work is conducted in a team of 3 – 5 students with regular meetings with supervisors (and clients).

Clinical Programme

In addition to the Clinical Programme of the Amsterdam Law Clinics , the Fair Work and Equality Law Clinic offers a thematic workshop to its students.

Through this workshop students will acquire a thorough knowledge of the regulation of work and the role of labour and equality law at EU and international level (ILO, UN, and Council of Europe). An overview will be provided of the European, international and Dutch legislation prohibiting discrimination on grounds of sex, race or ethnic origin, as well as on disability, age, sexual orientation or religion/beliefs in a number of areas.  This background will allow students to analyse labour law, decent work, and equality law issues in the national and international legal context. 

Key issues for discussion will include:

  • Sources of law
  • Key concepts: Direct discrimination, indirect discrimination, harassment
  • Burden of proof
  • Remedies and sanctions

Current and prior projects and publications

A previous case of the Fair Work and Equality Law Clinic looked at the issue of  (indirect) discrimination. The case concerned the topic of equal pay for men and women. The legal question at hand saw to the practice of basing the salary of an employee on his/her last-earned salary in a previous job and whether this constitutes (indirect) discrimination of women. In this case the clinic has been working together with pro bono lawyers.

Currently, the Fair Work and Equality Law Clinics researches whether the exclusion from social security benefits of workers who work less than four days a week as a domestic worker - which includes providing medical care on the basis of government budget provided to their private employers -  constitutes (indirect) discrimination against women, given that the vast majority of these domestic workers are women.

Experiences from former clinic students

Lejla Brkic (FWELC Spring ’20) Master Staats- en Bestuursrecht
Copyright: FdR
Participating in the Fair Work and Equality Law Clinic was an excellent way for me to get a better grasp of what it is like to work for a client as a lawyer. I learned a great deal from writing a case file together with the actual lawyers, and working with students from different masters was really helpful and provided new insights. Lejla Brkic (FWELC Spring ’20) Master Staats- en Bestuursrecht

Contact us

For any questions regarding the Business and Human Rights Clinic, please email us at amsterdamlawclinics@uva.nl or contact:

mr. dr. M.S.A. (Marlies) Vegter

Clinical Lecturer Fair Work and Equality Law Clinic

dr. N.E. (Nuria) Ramos Martin

(on sick leave)

News

Read the latest news about the Amsterdam Law Clinics, the Amsterdam Law Practice and the Amsterdam Law Hub.

How to apply

Please submit your application, in English, by sending an email to amsterdamlawclinics@uva.nl addressed to Ms. Linde Bryk, LL.M, indicating in the subject-line ‘Application Amsterdam Law Clinics - [your name]’. Your application must include:

    • Your CV or resume (max. 2 pages);
    • An overview of relevant courses and grades from courses you have taken at the University of Amsterdam or other universities;
    • A sample of 1 - 5 pages (maximum 10) of your own writing in Dutch or English related to your studies;
    • An analysis responding to the questions below, in a Word document that has your signature and indicating place and date: 
      • Why are you interested in taking part in the Amsterdam Law Clinics, and more specifically in the clinics you have listed as your preferences? (max 400 words)
      • In your opinion, what is one of the most impresssive public interest law case you have come across that has been dealt with in the courts and why is this case of such importance? What would you have done differently? (max. 400 words)
    • Indication of preferences. The Amsterdam Law Clinics strive to ensure that as many students as possible are given the opportunity to participate in a clinic during their Master. We cannot ensure admission to a particular clinic and the application and selection process for the clinics is competitive. We recommend students to list in the e-mail that accompanies their application at least 3 clinics ranked in order of interest.

If selected for the clinic of first choice, selection is binding.

 

Deadline for application:

  • First semester: 19 June 2020
  • Second semester: 16 November 2020

Depending on the amount of cases and projects, Clinics may decide to issue an additional call for applications at the end of August 2020. We advise students who are interested and who missed the deadline to keep themselves informed on these potential additional calls through the website of the Amsterdam Law Clinics.  

Contact former clinic students

If you're interested in more hands-on information about the clinic and experiences from former Fair Work and Equality Law Clinic students, you can contact any of the following former students. Send and e-mail to amsterdamlawclinics@uva.nl and we will provide you with the relevant contact information.

Former Fair Work and Equality Law Clinic students 2019-2020:

  • Jitte Rickli
  • Valentine Schols
  • Lejla Brkic
  • Anastasiia Kachalova