Hello! I am Miriam from the Norwegian free legal aid partner organization Jussbuss. This week we are happy to be visiting PRO BONO Portugal. Thank you so much for having us! It is with great pleasure that we are getting a better understanding of how the Portuguese legal world works, and that we are given the opportunity to exchange knowledge. Next week, we are looking forward to hosting PRO BONO Portugal in Norway! In this blog post, I will explain a little bit about Jussbuss.
Jussbuss is a free legal aid clinic based in Oslo, Norway. The clinic is affiliated with the faculty of law at the University of Oslo, and consists of roughly 30 employees, who are all law students. The employees are partly paid and work partly voluntarily. Associate Professor at the Department of Public and International Law, Anders Løvlie, is responsible for the formal management.
Jussbuss started as a research project in 1971, with the purpose of investigating whether there was an unfulfilled need for legal aid. It turned out there was a major need for legal advice among the general public. As a result of this, Jussbuss still exists today. Our main goal is to make free legal aid more available by changing legal policies.
JussBuss provides free legal assistance in individual cases. We mainly provide oral guidance but are also able to provide written guidance and party representation in some cases. Jussbuss work in legal fields in which we believe the need for legal aid is largest. Amongst other areas, these fields include immigration law, labour law, prison law, tenancy, environmental law, social security law, and debt law. In our work to provide legal aid we sometimes do outreach work to reach client groups who might not contact us otherwise.
Based on the experience from our casework, Jussbuss’ promotes our clients' views in the political debate. We use our experience to express concern about gaps and weaknesses in the legislation. In the areas we specialize in, we actively contribute with our experience in political processes to improve the legal framework. Jussbuss is also a keen consultation body and provides answers to political hearings which we believe are important to our clients. We also participate in political meetings and speak up in the media about matters we face in our casework.
After reading this blog post, I hope you know a little bit more about Jussbuss! We are looking forward to continuing our collaboration with PRO BONO Portugal.
Miriam Drag Eiring