Social Responsibility in Law and Education
The Elga Cegla Clinical Law Programs at TAU (hereinafter The Clinics) are the largest, most comprehensive 'Direct Client Service' of their kind in Israel. Our in-house clinical staff, 12 lawyers who are expert practitioners in their fields, is dedicated exclusively to legal education and legal-social action.
The Clinics combine practical and theoretical legal studies; the provision of legal aid; personal and communal empowerment. This combination offers unique insights that enrich academic research and legal practice alike.
Under the guidance of the clinical staff and TAU faculty members, students can choose from the following seven Clinics: Criminal Justice, Environmental Justice, Holocaust Survivors' Rights, Housing, Community & Law, Human Rights, Refugee Rights and Workers' Rights.
Studying the Law, Serving the Community
The Clinics engage some 140 students every academic year and are committed to providing students with the best possible educational experience.
The educational work combines coursework and practical experience, emphasizing applied practice and a critical reflexive practicum within a realistic practice setting. Students are required to participate in a weekly two-hour academic class, as well as devote 4-6 hours a week to practical field work. Participation entitles them to eight academic credits.
As students are given the responsibility to assist in representing clients in actual cases, they acquire knowledge and experience that they can carry into their future work in assisting the disadvantaged. Thus the clinical program maintains academic excellence and at the same time develops professional and academic responsibility through community engagement.
How We Do - What We Do
By working on real life cases and projects, our students receive meaningful hands-on experience that helps develop their professional skills and prepares them to take their first steps in the legal world. During their course of studies, students work closely with the clinical instructors to draft legal documents; they meet and interview clients and assist the lawyers in representation in court.
The clinics toolkit is varied and includes the following:
- Litigation: legal representation in cases at all stages of legal proceedings and all courts.
- Community organizing: traditional community work that incorporates legal aspects with special attention to low-income workers and tenants in need of affordable housing solutions.
- Promoting Policy and Legislation – making the law work for the marginalized: activities aimed at improving or promoting the establishment of legislation and policy dealing with the needs of Israeli society’s marginalized, disadvantaged populations. The work entails drafting bills; challenging existing policy; appearing in public committees; and more.
Students also participate in various field trips in which they can further understand the issues at hand, as well as meet relevant figures such as representatives of local communities or authorities; other NGO's working in the field; etc.