Transforming legal workplaces through

advocacy and action

COVID-19 response

What has ALWU been doing to support its members through COVID-19?

  • ALWU’s COVID-19 response report sets out information regarding support provided to employees, salary reductions and redundancies in respect of legal employers that received the government’s wage subsidy.
  • ALWU has set up an Employment Law Committee to provide general guidance to its members in relation to employment law issues. The Committee consists of 8 highly experienced barristers, senior law firm employees, in-house practitioners and a clerk at the Employment Court and is chaired by Maria Dew QC. It has released its first guidance document – Guidance on the COVID-19 Wage Subsidy and Potential Wage Reductions.
  • Members who require legal assistance in relation to an issue arising in their workplace, whether as a consequence of COVID-19 or not, can now get free legal advice and representation (including through to a formal process) from ALWU’s Pro Bono Panel. If you are a member and you need the Panel’s assistance, please contact

About us

ALWU was formed in February 2019 to represent workers at legal workplaces in Aotearoa. It aims to:

  • Promote inclusivity, kindness and a sense of pride in the legal profession.
  • Provide a cohesive public voice for legal workers.
  • Stop the unfair treatment of junior lawyers.
  • Promote safe and healthy workplaces for legal workers in New Zealand.
  • Advocate for marginalised groups of legal workers, including junior lawyers, women, people in the LGBTQI+ community, tangata whenua, people of colour, and disabled people.

In order to achieve those goals, ALWU will:

  • Advocates for fair treatment and accountability in the profession.
  • Collects and publishes data to promote transparency about pay and working conditions in legal workplaces.
  • Conducts campaigns to reduce the power imbalance and pay gap between employers and workers.
  • Connects legal workers with qualified support, advocacy and representation on workplace issues.

Help ALWU make legal workplaces safe, healthy and enjoyable and give a little to ALWU here or join us.

“I think formation of this union is a fantastic advance for all legal workers and for improvement of the culture of our profession. I love the concept of promoting inclusivity and kindness and the fact that, for the first time, a collective voice can be raised for those that work in the legal industry. There has been too much isolation and powerlessness for legal workers who sit at the bottom of what has traditionally been a very hierarchical culture.”

Frances Joychild QC Barrister