This event brings together a panel of Westminster alumni who will talk about their legal practice and how they use the Human Rights Act in their work. Speakers include:

  • John Beckley, Barrister, Garden Court Chambers
  • Rebekah P Bageya, Consultant Solicitor, David Wylde & Co and Lambeth Law Centre
  • Kate Jessop, Solicitor, Brighton Housing Trust
  • Annabel Kennedy, Solicitor, Mary Ward Legal Centre
  • Anne McMurdie, Solicitor, Birnberg Pierce Solicitors
  • Stefano Ruis, Partner, Hickman Rose Solicitors

This is an opportunity to hear lawyers with varied practices talk about their work and to find out what being a human rights lawyer is all about. The panel presentations will be followed by questions and answers and a drinks reception giving students the opportunity to find out more about a career in human rights.

Register now for a free ticket via Eventbrite


About the speakers

Rebekah Bageya
Rebekah BageyaRebekah qualified as a solicitor in 2013, but has spent the last six years advising clients and organisations in all areas of asylum, immigration, EU and nationality law. Having worked across the private and public sector specialising in business immigration, migrant worker sponsorship and corporate compliance management, her passion continues to be working with vulnerable clients, in particular victims of domestic violence, victims of human trafficking, and vulnerable children.

Rebekah studied as an undergraduate at Westminster University, obtaining a BA Hons in Socio-Legal Studies and Criminology. She then went on to complete the GDL and the LPC at the College of Law in London in 2011 and became accredited to give immigration advice in 2010. Rebekah completed her LLM in Human Rights Law this September.                                                                                              

John Beckley
John BeckleyJohn is a barrister at Garden Court Chambers, practising in housing and community care law. A focus of his work is representing clients who are alleged to have caused nuisance to their neighbours, often as a result of mental health issues or drug and alcohol addiction.

He is regularly instructed by the Official Solicitor to represent clients who lack capacity. Before being called to the bar,  John worked for an HIV charity, a disability charity and Tower Hamlets Law Centre. He completed the GDL part-time at Westminster University, the BVC part-time at City University and pupillage at Garden Court.  He also sits as a Deputy District Judge.

Kate Jessop
Kate is a solicitor who has specialised in legal aid asylum and immigration law for nearly 30 years.  After a brief career in theatre and TV she worked as an assistant for a Labour MP when she became interested in Immigration Law. She worked as an unqualified caseworker at Battersea and Wandsworth Law centre, and, while working at Newham Rights Centre, she started a part-time Graduate Diploma in Law at Brighton University.

She then studied for the LPC at Westminster University and did her training contract at Mildred & Beaumont solicitors. After qualifying as a solicitor aged 40 she then worked in private practice in London for 3-4 years, and at North Islington Law Centre, before moving to her current job in Brighton where she leads a small team of asylum and immigration specialists at Brighton Housing Trust, continuing to do legal aid work. 
                                                                                                          
Annabel Kennedy

Annabel KennedyAnnabel is a solicitor at the Mary Ward Legal Centre specialising in housing. She represents people facing eviction and people who are homeless. Annabel specialises in working with clients who are particularly vulnerable including those with mental health issues, disabilities, drug and alcohol issues and survivors of violence and abuse. Before becoming a solicitor, Annabel worked in the voluntary sector with homeless families, asylum seekers and women made homeless by domestic violence.

Annabel completed the Graduate Diploma in Law part-time at Middlesex University and then the LPC at Westminster University before qualifying as a solicitor at Fisher Meredith LLP in 2008.
                                                                                                              
Anne McMurdie
Anne McMurdieAnne recently joined Birnberg Peirce and Partners, a long-established legal practice upholding civil rights and liberties. Anne specialises in Public Law/Judicial Review cases. She worked at Public Law Solicitors in Birmingham specialising in judicial review, predominantly in the social welfare and community care context.

Anne studied for her LLB, and then her LPC, part-time in the evening at the University of Westminster, whilst working full-time at the Terrence Higgins Trust as a Housing Adviser.  She then worked as a housing paralegal at Anthony Gold solicitors, before being employed by the same firm as a solicitor after qualification.                              

Stefano Ruis
Stefano RuisStefano is a partner at Hickman and Rose specialising in civil claims against the state on behalf of individuals, together with related applications for judicial review. He also advises on police cautions and enhanced criminal record certificate disclosures, with a number of successful challenges to date. His practice includes advice on police complaints as well as challenges to IPCC decisions. His work encompasses actions on behalf of vulnerable witnesses whose identities may have been wrongly disclosed to third parties or where any risk to them has been mismanaged by the police. He also undertakes public inquiry work and is currently instructed by a number of core participants in the Undercover Policing Inquiry.

After returning to study following work as an adviser in the public sector, Stefano completed his LPC at the University of Westminster before qualifying as a solicitor in 1997.