Legal and Policy Assistant

Fair Trials Europe

Legal and Policy Assistant

Fair Trials Europe

Brussels, Belgium

RESPONSIBLE TO: Legal and Policy Officer
LOCATION: Rue de la Pépinière 10A 1000 Brussels, Belgium (with occasional travel in Europe)
HOURS: Full time (38 hours per week). Evening and weekend work will be required from time to time
SALARY: EUR 30.000 – 35.000 gross (including holiday pay and 13th month)


To assist Fair Trials’ Legal and Policy team in Brussels in all aspects of its work, and to contribute to Fair Trials’ work across offices. Fair Trials aims to advance fair trial rights in Europe through research, strategic litigation, advocacy and policy work, coalition building, training and capacity building.

We will be hiring three legal and policy assistants to support our work in key areas, including racial disparities in criminal justice systems, procedural defence rights in the EU and Council of Europe, access to a lawyer in police custody, overuse of pre‐trial detention, cross‐border cooperation, trial waiver systems, digitalisation of criminal justice and electronic evidence, access to justice for vulnerable defendants.



  • Legal research to develop policy positions, publications such as reports and news pieces, training and meeting materials, and funding applications for new projects;
  • Assistance with developing research tools for collating input on legal and policy issues from members of the Legal Experts Advisory Panel (LEAP), a European network of criminal justice experts managed by Fair Trials;
  • Monitoring domestic and regional legal developments;
  • Drafting, editing, and disseminating briefings, reports, communiques, meeting and training materials.

Strategic litigation

  • Monitoring regional and domestic courts to identify opportunities for litigation which will further Fair Trials’ strategic aims;
  • Supporting the production of third‐party interventions, amicus curiae briefs and applications to the European Court of Human Rights, international bodies and criminal justice monitoring bodies;
  • Assisting with the development and documentation of individual cases for public campaigns, policy submissions and/or impact litigation.

Project Coordination

  • Supporting the Legal and Policy team in the delivery and coordination of multi‐country and multi‐partner projects, including coordination with project partners, organization of project meetings, production of meeting notes, and provision of logistical support;
  • Working with the Finance Officer on the financial management of legal and policy projects. Contributing to the drafting of funding applications and funder reports.

Networks and Communications

  • Working with the Communications team on public campaigns and communications about Fair Trials’ work;
  • Supporting the logistics, planning and delivery of events and meetings. Broadening our LEAP network and building coalitions.


  • Carrying out administrative and logistical tasks. Planning events;
  • Carrying out any other duties commensurate with the post;
  • Promoting and implementing Fair Trials’ equal opportunities policy in all aspects of work.



  • Legal training at least degree level;
  • Demonstrated enthusiasm and dedication to human rights and/or criminal justice reform;
  • Excellent legal analytical skills, including the ability to analyse legislation, policy proposals and legal decisions;
  • Excellent research skills;
  • Excellent practical and proactive organisational skills and creative problem‐solving skills;
  • Fluency in English with excellent written and spoken communication skills;
  • Ability to understand new information quickly, with experience of working well under pressure, excellent time management, and the ability to manage competing priorities;
  • Conscientious, with close attention to detail;
  • A team‐player and a willingness to be flexible according to the current demands of the organisation. Must have permission to work in the Belgium.


  • Master’s degree specialised in criminal law, EU law, criminology and/or human rights. Knowledge of criminal procedural rights issues in Europe would be an advantage;
  • Knowledge of another European language would be an advantage;
  • A good understanding of EU legislative procedure would be a distinct advantage. Experience with campaigns, in grassroots or professional organisations;
  • Experience organising events;
  • Fair Trials is an equal opportunity employer and values diversity. We encourage applicants from all backgrounds to apply for this position.

About Fair Trials

Fair Trials is an international human rights NGO, which exists to build respect for the human right to a fair trial in criminal cases. We have grown gradually over the past five years and have an established track‐record as a trusted voice on criminal justice. We have 20 staff across offices in London, Brussels and Washington DC, and are in the process of increasing the geographical reach of our work.

Fair Trials Europe

Fair Trials has become a leading contributor to exciting developments in the field of criminal justice across the European Union. Fair Trials Europe was established as a non‐profit public foundation in Belgium in 2014, to act as Fair Trials’ hub of expertise in Europe. It is, itself, at the heart of an engaged EU‐wide network of over 200 criminal justice and human rights experts (the Legal Experts Advisory Panel, LEAP) which it coordinates.

Salary and conditions

The post of Legal and Policy Assistant is full time. The gross salary is €30,000‐ €35,000 per year (including 13th month and holiday pay). The role is based in Brussels.

To apply

Please send a CV and cover letter electronically to no later than midnight CET on the 11th October 2020. Applications received after this deadline will not be considered. Please clearly include your name and “Legal & Policy Assistant” in the subject field of the email.

Your CV and cover letter should include:

  • Your name and contact details;
  • Your educational history, including universities/colleges attended with dates and significant qualifications obtained;
  • Your employment history, including all significant posts you have held – with dates, the names of the employers, and a description of the main duties, together with your present or most recent salary, and your contractual notice period. (You should also explain any significant gaps, e.g. covered by travelling, self‐employment etc.);
  • An explanation of why you would like the job; the qualities you would bring to it; how you would approach the task if you were you awarded the post;
  • The names and contact details of two referees who know your work, who may be contacted if you are short‐listed;
  • Information about how you learned of the post.

If you have any queries, please send them to the same email address.

The selection processes

We will aim to inform short‐listed candidates by week commencing 12th October 2020, with interviews for short‐listed candidates being held online during week commencing on the 19th October 2020 and on the 26th of October. If necessary, a second round of interviews may be scheduled at a later date. All interviews will be held online. The recruitment process will involve an interview and a written exercise.

Fair Trials is conducting this appointment on equal opportunity principles and will welcome applications from candidates who can fulfil the requirements of the post irrespective of race, nationality, gender, sexual orientation, age or disability.

The personal data which you have provided, and which we may request, in connection with your application, will not be retained beyond 12 months should your application be unsuccessful. If you are appointed, your personal data will only be used for the purposes of human resources management.

Don't forget to mention EuroLegalJobs when applying.

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© EuroJobsites 2020

EuroJobsites is a registered company number: 4694396 VAT number: GB 880 9055 04

Registered address: EuroJobsites Ltd, Unit 8, Kingsmill Business Park, Kingston Upon Thames, London, KT1 3GZ, United Kingdom

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