Key practice areas: Public Interest Litigation
Qualifications: BA, LLB (Hons)
Location: Melbourne (VIC)
Elizabeth O'Shea is responsible for Maurice Blackburn's Social
Justice practice working on cases which address issues of
community concern and further the public good.
Lizzie has extensive experience and expertise in the area of
employment and industrial relations. During her time at Maurice
Blackburn, she has worked on discrimination and unfair dismissal
matters and assisted in a test case challenging a provision in
Workchoices that allowed an employer to dismiss an employee and
advertise their job at a lower rate of pay.
Lizzie has also worked at the International Labour Organisation
in Geneva monitoring compliance with conventions pertaining to
labour standards. She worked specifically on provisions relating to
gender and racial equality in the workplace. She provided technical
legal assistance to member countries drafting their labour codes
and attended the International Labour Conference in 2009.
After her time in Geneva, Lizzie undertook a voluntary
internship in Louisiana, USA with a capital defence office working
with indigent prisoners on death row. She assisted prisoners in
drafting Federal Petitions on a range of legal and procedural
issues and saw first hand the importance of effective legal
representation for those in society who are traditionally
Lizzie returned to Melbourne to work in the Social Justice
practice and is passionate about righting perceived injustice and
addressing issues that are of a broad community concern. Maurice
Blackburn's Social Justice practice was formed with a commitment to
taking on cases of political and social significance. The practice
provides access to justice for people who would otherwise be unable
to afford legal representation. The firm conducts social
justice litigation on behalf of refugees, workers who have
been underpaid, and persons who have been unfairly targeted by
national security legislation.
Lizzie is also Chair of the volunteer human rights
not-for-profit media organisation Right Now.