WA Law Society calls for reversal of ‘damaging’ budget cuts
The Law Society of Western Australia has urged the state government to reverse its decision to axe $110,000 from the budget of the legal body's school education programme.
WA Law Society president Hayley Cormann said the $110,000 budget cut will have a “tangible negative impact on the community, particularly affecting the opportunities of young Western Australians to engage with and understand the law and legal system”.
“The Law Society therefore appeals to the state government to reverse these damaging cuts, and reinstate the $110,000 in funding from 1 July 2019,” Ms Cormann said.
She explained: “The Law Society’s Francis Burt Law Education Programme plays a vital and unique role in advancing the Western Australian community’s understanding of the law, legal principles and justice system. The driving principle of the programme is that all Western Australians should understand the law and the legal system which affects their everyday lives.”
“In 2017–2018, more than 10,000 people engaged in activities through the Francis Burt Law Education Programme, with approximately 85 per cent of this figure made up by primary and secondary school groups,” Ms Cormann said.
“The programme provides important resources to students and teachers, as well as special programmes and events including professional learning for teachers, the Lawyer Visits to Schools Network, Subsidised School Visits Programme, Cluedunnit Kids Competition, Youth Civics Leadership Day and Sir Ronald Wilson Lecture. Visitors to the programme have the opportunity to observe real courts in session, facilitating unique learning experiences and providing an opportunity to see our justice system in action.”