The EME pro bono program utilizes the skills and knowledge of our lawyers and harnesses their passion for justice.
In 2011 in EME, we spent around 11,000 hours on pro bono work, the value of which at our standard rates is over £3m, making pro bono our second biggest client in the region.
Pro bono highlights in EME include:
- In partnership with BNY Mellon, we sent volunteers to the Dellow Centre, a drop in legal clinic for homeless clients run at Providence Row in London.
- We worked with Queen Mary students at the Queen Mary’s Legal Advice Centre (QMAC) and on the Liberty Letters Clinic. We were short listed for the “Best Partnership in Pro-Bono” Award for our work with Queen Mary University.
- We sent trainees to Liberty every three months on pro bono secondments.
- We took on three Privy Council Appeal cases for clients serving life sentences in the Caribbean.
- We worked with Amicus on developing their Trial Toolbox, a capital case trial manual for lawyers in Arizona.
- We assisted Reprieve with their work in relation to prisoner rights and European nationals facing the death penalty.
- We worked with the Nucleus Legal Advice Centre with its restructuring.
- We were a Sustaining Partner of PILnet, the Global Network for Public Interest Law.
- We were part of the Peace Brigades Alliance for Lawyers at Risk.
- As a response to the London riots, we volunteered for LawWorks’ RIOT HELP programme, providing free legal advice to the victims of the Riots. We also donated £5,000 to the Capital Community Foundation’s "We Love London" Riot Fund.
- We were involved in A4ID’s “Thought Leadership” group on the Ruggie Guiding Principles on business and human rights. Reed Smith led a session on how the Guiding Principles relate to employment practices.
- We have partnered with SCEME to produce a leaflet in time for the 2012 Games to try to protect women from being trafficked into London, a very real risk as seen elsewhere in the world in the lead up to previous Olympic/Paralympics Games. Our UAE offices are also working with SCEME to prevent sex trafficking and gender based violence against women in the Middle East, notably Iraqi refugees.
- We assisted Fair Trials International by drafting country specific fact sheets to help inform those who find themselves arrested in foreign countries. Reed Smith volunteers from across our global network were involved in this project.
- Our UAE offices coordinated a pro bono project in Jordan for the Center for Justice and Legal Aid to help break down barriers to access to justice under Jordanian law. This project involved lawyers from our Abu Dhabi, Dubai, London, Paris, Munich and Piraeus offices.
- Our Munich office became a founding member of Pro Bono Deutschland e.V., a non-profit organisation for the advancement of pro bono legal work in Germany.
- Our Abu Dhabi office developed a relationship with the Institute of Judicial Studies and will help deliver in 2012 a series of lectures and workshops on practice and legal issues.
- Our Piraeus office was heavily involved in a children's rights case law database project for CRIN (Child’s Rights Information Network).