Attorney, Head of the Johannesburg Law Clinic, Lawyers for Human Rights
Jessica Lawrence is an attorney at Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR) and is currently the head of LHR’s Johannesburg Law Clinic. In that role, Jessica manages client needs and the daily operations of the law clinic, including developing and implementing policies, procedures, and standards to guide the clinic operations. She further manages a team of lawyers who provide legal advice and representation to asylum seekers, refugees, and migrants to ensure due process within South Africa’s refugee and immigration systems. She is further responsible for conducting strategic advocacy and impact litigation to address systemic challenges with South Africa’s asylum system as well as combat xenophobia. Prior to heading the Johannesburg Law Clinic, Jessica was the head of LHR’s Labour Unit where she initiated strategic litigation to develop legal protection for precarious workers. She further worked in LHR’s Environmental Rights Programme, where she focused on environmental justice for marginalised communities and Business and Human Rights.
Jessica holds an honours degree in law and a master’s degree in human rights law. With more than 8 years of experience within the civil society sector, she hopes to continue making a positive contribution towards achieving social justice and is committed to changing the landscape of refugee protection, environmental justice, and gender equality.
Jessica was selected to be part of the 2022 Fortune-U.S. Department of State Global Women’ s Mentoring Program.
Mentor: Jami McKeon, Chair, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP