ATTORNEY-General, Robert McClelland has announced additional funding of $360,000 for community legal centres this year.
The injection of funds is marked to develop or expand partnerships with universities providing placement opportunities for students in family law.
“Access to practical legal education and experience is important as it not only helps students develop their legal skills, but also increases awareness of social justice and equity issues in the legal system,” McClelland said.
“This in turn benefits the community through increased access to legal advice and assistance, particularly for those who are disadvantaged or vulnerable.”
Funding will be provided to a string of community legal centres across Australia.
The funds will assist in the development or expansion of existing clinical legal partnership arrangements which include the opportunity for students to participate in alternative dispute resolution and to provide assistance to clients in rural and regional areas.
The Australian Government is also providing ongoing funding to four community legal centres under the Clinical Legal Education program of the Commonwealth Community Legal Services Program.
The community legal centres working with their university partners include the Advocacy and Support Centre, Toowoomba & University of Southern Queensland; the Hunter Community Legal Centre, Newcastle & the University of Newcastle; the Loddon Campaspe Community Legal Centre, Bendigo & La Trobe University; the Macquarie Legal Centre, Sydney & Macquarie University; the Kingsford Legal Centre, Sydney & University of NSW; the Hume Riverina Community Legal Service, Wodonga & Charles Darwin University; and the SCALES Community Legal Centre, Perth & Murdoch University.