Public Interest Law Careers Guide - Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission

Field of Law

Human Rights

Stage of career

Graduates; Practising Lawyers

Contact Details

Address: Level 3, 204 Lygon Street, Carlton 3053
Phone: 1300 891 848
Visit the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission website
Contact person: John Ruberto - HR Co-ordinator

Description of Organisation

The Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission is an independent statutory body with responsibilities under three laws:

  • Equal Opportunity Act 2010
  • Racial and Religious Tolerance Act 2001
  • Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006

Services provided by the Commission include:

  • a free telephone Enquiry Line
  • a free, fair and timely dispute resolution service
  • information and education about equal opportunity, racial and religious vilification and the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities
  • education, training and consultancy services.

The Commission conducts research and strategic projects to:

  • address systemic causes of discrimination, sexual harassment and victimisation under the Equal Opportunity Act 2010 and racial and religious vilification under the Racial and Religious Tolerance Act 2001, and
  • promote and protect human rights under the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities.

Projects undertaken by VEOHRC include:

  • Discrimination in the private rental market
  • Children with disability and relinquishment
  • Held Back: the experiences of students with disability in schools
  • Women in the law: the experiences of women working in the legal profession across Victoria
  • Fair go, sport!: tackling homophobia and discrimination in sport
  • Discrimination against older drivers
  • Rights of older people: the key human rights issues affecting older Victorians
  • Volunteering and the Equal Opportunity Act: how the Equal Opportunity Act 2010 applies to volunteers.
  • Mature age workers and the Equal Opportunity Act: educating mature-age workers about age discrimination
  • Everyday People, Everyday Rights: establishing human rights awareness and advocacy among everyday Victorians
  • Rights of Passage: reducing racism and discrimination experienced by young Australian-Sudanese people
  • Deadly People: collection of stories from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

Time to Respond: improving access to taxi services for people with a disability.

Number of legal positions within organisation

A number of positions in the Commission make use of people's legal skills, including roles in the Legal Unit, Strategic Policy and Projects Unit, the Community Relations Unit, and the Dispute Resolution Unit.

Legal qualifications would be an advantage for about 30 positions. They are required for 7 positions.

Does your organisation have a human rights officer?

All roles in the Commission promote human rights.

Information for university students/graduates

Do you have a graduate clerkship program? (involving practical legal training and admission to practise)

No. But the Commission will sometimes take students for their work placement while they are doing practical legal training.

How does one apply

Through your educational institution, not direct contact with the Commission.

How many law graduates do you employ outside your graduate program, and what sort of roles do they fill?

Roles at the Commission are open to the public and filled on the basis of merit. Generally, people need a few years' experience in the workplace to be competitive for roles at the Commission.

Information for practising lawyers

What are you looking for in a permanent employee?

Excellent legal and policy skills; excellent communication skills; strategic and analytical skills; ability to develop and maintain productive working relationships within the Commission and with a wide range of external stakeholders; project management skills; commitment and drive.

What prior work is viewed favourably?

Varies depending on the role, but can include experience in human rights and/or anti-discrimination law and/or international law, employment law, corporate governance, advocacy, policy development, training, and dispute resolution.

On average, how many positions become available per year?

On average 2 in the Legal Unit. About 5 positions on average across the Commission where legal qualifications would be an advantage.

How many applications do you receive for these?

Varies depending on the level of seniority and degree of specialisation sought. 30-80 on average.

Where do you advertise your positions?

On the Victorian Government Careers website, on the Commission's website, sometimes in the media and job seeker sites.

Do you use a recruitment agency?

Generally not

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