The WLA will be highlighting some of the legal internships our members had over the summer. In this post, rising 2L Hayley Evans details her experience in London this summer interning with Rights Watch.
This summer I am working at Rights Watch (UK), a London-based non-governmental
organization. Rights Watch (UK) works to promote just and accountable security through
ensuring that the measures states take in pursuit of national security are compliant with
international and human rights law. Formerly British-Irish Rights Watch, Rights Watch (UK) has over twenty-five years of national security experience. Its mandate originally surrounded the
Troubles in Northern Ireland, and later expanded post-Iraq War. Rights Watch (UK) has three
distinct, but interrelated, programs of work: 1) securitization of suspect communities; 2) global
warfare; and 3) post-conflict justice.
Thus far, my internship has been even better than I could have expected. I work with a very
small but dynamic team of international lawyers who bring varying experiences and academic
backgrounds to their work. At the moment, our whole team is comprised of women, which is
especially unique in the fields of international security and international humanitarian law.
Working with these distinguished and principled women has been rewarding in terms of
academic growth and inspirational in terms of career trajectory.
In the first month of my internship, I primarily worked on legal and policy research
related to countering/preventing violent extremism in preparation for Rights Watch (UK)’s first
international roundtable on counter-extremism at Chatham House. That research was
especially important at that moment because of the recent terror attacks in London at London
Bridge, Borough Market, and Finsbury Park. Later in the summer, I will be supporting
Rights Watch (UK)’s Northern Ireland Work. In particular, I will be focusing on ensuring the
mechanisms agreed upon in the Stormont House Agreement are established and human rights
compliant, and that the conflict related gender harms in Northern Ireland are recognized and
I can’t wait to see what the rest of the summer has in store for me. London has turned into an
ideal location for a summer internship—it hasn’t even been too rainy! —and its proximity to
other cool places hasn’t been bad, either.
Below are some photos of Hayley’s adventures in London and the UK.