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15 Sep 2022

Trauma-informed Legal Practice: Better Outcomes for Clients, a Better Day’s Work for Solicitors and Barristers


Date 15 Sep 2022
Time 16:30 - 18:00
Location see details


WHAT: On Thursday 15 September the Human Rights Centre at the School of Law, Queen’s University Belfast will host a hybrid conference, ‘Trauma-informed Legal Practice: Better Outcomes for Clients, a Better Day’s Work for Solicitors and Barristers’.

The Conference will be opened by the first Lady Chief Justice of Northern Ireland Dame Siobhan Keegan, and will include Melissa Rutherford from Trauma Informed Lawyers Network Scotland, and an expert panel of local speakers.

In recent years, justice sector organisations including social workers, police and prisons have begun using trauma informed practice to help vulnerable people change how their story turns out. At today’s event, the legal profession will look at the different ways that trauma informed practice can revolutionise their legal work.

Lawyers deal with people living through extraordinary circumstances, and often see the worst of human behaviour. Having dealt with traumatised clients using common sense for generations, science now allows lawyers to understand more precisely the serious impacts that current or unresolved childhood traumas can have on clients’ health and ability to function. Firms and counsel can use these insights in very practical ways to shape their service-delivery model and client interactions, so as to better help their clients. They can resist re-traumatisation of clients and remove unintended obstacles to them being able to receive their services effectively.

At a time when court delays, spiralling costs and post-pandemic pressures put the justice system in the news for all the wrong reasons, this event will provide lawyers and the community with an opportunity to think about how doing things differently can give better outcomes for their clients and reduce the emotional toll on legal professionals themselves.

This conference will provide practical briefings on the basics of the trauma informed approach and what it means in family, criminal, legacy and general practice. 

WHERE: Hybrid (in-person and online). Moot Court Room, School of Law, Queen’s University Belfast on Thursday 15 September at 4.30pm.

Please register via Eventbrite:

Media enquiries to Zara McBrearty at Queen’s Communications Office on email: and Mob: 07795676858.


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