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Zehrah joins Garden Court as a pupil under the supervision of Grace Brown (first six) and Keir Monteith QC (second six). She intends to build a practice in public, human rights, immigration and asylum law – with a particular interest in representing survivors of gender-based violence, trafficking and exploitation.

Zehrah has previously worked at a number of non-profit organisations, including Liberty and Southall Black Sisters. She also currently sits on the Executive Committee of the Human Rights’ Lawyers Association.

Background

Prior to pupillage, Zehrah worked on the Policy and Campaigns team at human rights advocacy group – Liberty. There she led parliamentary and public-facing interventions on issues including domestic abuse, abortion rights and LGBTQIA+ equality. She also worked on campaigns challenging immigration detention, the Government’s ‘hostile environment’ policies, and police use of surveillance technologies.

Zehrah spearheaded Liberty’s policy and advocacy work to secure legal protections for migrant survivors of domestic abuse, as part of the Step Up Migrant Women coalition. Owing to her in-depth knowledge in this area, she gave oral evidence in Parliament as an expert witness to the Joint Committee on the Draft Domestic Abuse Bill, briefed the Joint Committee on Human Rights, and drafted submissions for the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture.

In addition, she worked on campaign strategies and briefed parliamentarians on abortion rights in Northern Ireland, reforms to the Gender Recognition Act 2004, and ending indefinite immigration detention.  She was also the UK focal point for the Religious Freedoms and Equal Treatment group of the International Network for Civil Liberties Organisations. 

Zehrah previously specialised in assisting migrant and black, Asian and minoritised ethnic (BAME) survivors of domestic abuse and sexual violence. As Legal, Policy and Campaigns Officer at Southall Black Sisters, she managed complex casework and strategic litigation for vulnerable clients and worked with the Director on the organisation’s legal intervention in HM Chief Inspector of Education, Children’s Services and Skills v The Interim Executive Board of Al-Hijrah School [2017] EWCA Civ 1426 – where they successfully challenged gender segregation in co-educational faith schools.

Prior to this, she worked as part of the legal team at the London Black Women’s Project, advising women of their rights and options when fleeing domestic abuse. This included providing legal and practical advice to clients on housing, immigration, family and welfare benefits law.

Training and Seminars

2019
Chair- ‘A Representative Legal Profession’, Human Rights Lawyers’ Association, Goldsmiths, University of London
Chair- ‘Gender Recognition and Human Rights – Reforms to the Gender Recognition Act 2004’, Human Rights Lawyers’ Association, Garden Court Chambers 
Panellist- ‘Abortion Rights in the UK’, INCLO, Irish Council for Civil Liberties, Lawyers for Choice and University of Birmingham, Dublin 
Chair- ‘Equality, Dignity and Safety – migrant women and the Domestic Abuse Bill’, Human Rights Lawyers’ Association, 11 King’s Bench Walk 
Panellist- ‘Campaigning to End Indefinite Detention’, Young Lawyers Making Change, Public Law Project, the Legal Education Foundation and Young Legal Aid Lawyers, BPP Waterloo 
Panellist- ‘No Recourse, No Safety’, Raising Women’s Voices, House of Lords 
Panellist- ‘The draft Domestic Abuse Bill – ensuring it works for all’, APPG on Domestic Violence and Abuse, House of Commons 

2018
Panellist- ‘The Hostile Environment for migrants – how is it affecting our communities?’, Barnfield Education Project, Greenwich Diversity Conference 
Panellist-  ‘Challenging Indefinite Immigration Detention’, Deport Deprive Extradite, Rich Mix 
Panellist- ‘State Violence and Our Communities – Dismantling the Hostile Environment’, NUS Black Students’ Conference, Bradford

Awards

HRLA Bursary Award, Human Rights Lawyers' Association (2016)
Overseas Internship Scholarship, the Honorable Society of Gray's Inn (2016)
Treasurer's Award, the Honorable Society of Gray's Inn (2016)
Residential Scholarship, the Honorable Society of Gray's Inn (2015-2016)
Richard Yorke Scholarship, the Honorable Society of Gray's Inn (2015)
Vocalise Award, the Honorable Society of Gray's Inn (2015)
CPE Award, the Honorable Society of Gray's Inn (2014)

Pro Bono Work

In 2016, Zehrah completed an internship with the Women’s Legal Centre in Cape Town, South Africa – which was funded by scholarships from the Human Rights Lawyers’ Association and Gray’s Inn. There she worked on the Centre’s 'health and human rights’ stream, for which she drafted submissions on HIV discrimination for the Kenyan High Court, an amicus curiae brief on trans prisoners’ rights for the South African Equality Court, and led an investigation with the Commission for Gender Equality on coerced sterilisations. She also helped grassroots advocates give legal advice to sex workers across Cape Town. 

Alongside studying, Zehrah spent a year as Director of Vocalise – a student-led initiative that runs debating programmes in prisons - where she worked with both adult and youth offenders in over 5 prisons in and near London.  She also volunteered with the Migrants’ Law Project, assisting with their judicial reviews, and worked as a Legal Assistant for the late Professor Norman Palmer QC CBE - on art, cultural heritage and international human rights law.

Education

City Law School, Bar Professional Training Course
City University London, Graduate Diploma in Law
University College London, BA (Hons) History

Professional Membership

Liberty
Human Rights Lawyers' Association
Immigration Lawyers Practitioners Association
Society of Asian Lawyers

Languages

French

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