Over the last 20 years, there have been significant cuts to Legal Aid funding. In addition (according to the Law Council of Australia) in 2015 the Federal Government cut funding to Community Legal Centres (CLCs) by 35%. The timing could not have been worse given demand for domestic violence assistance is at an all time high.
It is usually those most vulnerable who depend on services such as Legal Aid or CLCs to provide assistance. DV victims for example, are often conditioned into submission by their partners and made to feel there is no escape. They may not need complex advice, but they do need someone to point them in the right direction.
HHG Giving Back (the charitable arm of local law firm, HHG Legal Group) has decided to sponsor two initiatives to bolster support for those in need. First, HHG GB will be sponsoring the launch of free legal advice clinics in West Perth, Mandurah and Albany. Appointments will be short, sharp, free of charge and run by award winning volunteer lawyers.
Second, HHG Giving Back has set up an email helpline for victims of domestic violence and another worsening community problem – elder abuse. The email address email@example.com is for anyone who needs generic information about their options and when they should contact the Police.
The email address is monitored personally by Managing Director and Family Law Specialist, Simon Creek.
“It is unacceptable that community legal funding is being cut just when reports of domestic violence are at higher levels than ever before. On average, one woman is killed every week in Australia from domestic violence. Law firms have an opportunity to help close the gap left by reduced funding.”
Simon Creek, Managing Director
For more information about these new initiatives, do not hesitate to contact Simon Creek direct on firstname.lastname@example.org