Welcome to the September 2018 issue of AUSTRALIAN PRO BONO NEWS, the Centre’s monthly newsletter providing stories and articles of interest to the Australian pro bono community.
We welcome your feedback, submissions and ideas for both Australian Pro Bono News and our website – please email [email protected] or refer to our Contact page.
For past issues, visit our newsletter Archive.
The importance of access to justice underpinning healthy, functioning communities is a straightforward and simple concept but it can be very hard to achieve for the most disadvantaged and marginalised communities in our society.
This is one of the eighteen overarching themes in the Law Council’s Justice Project Final Report released on 23 August 2018. Our lead story is a pro bono perspective on this Report. A key strength of the Report is that it reflects the lived experience of clients, lawyers and others, including a large proportion of the Australian Pro Bono News readership. The report is a substantial and important piece of work and the Centre will be undertaking further analysis of it.
Thank you to all firms and Target signatories who have provided data for the annual Target report (due out end of September) and the biennial survey of firms with more than 50 lawyers. We are currently in the process of following up with firms and checking data.
Another key story this month provides an update on the pro bono regime within the Commonwealth’s legal purchasing arrangements as it transitions towards a whole of government panel system.
We have been busy at the Centre having just held a successful follow-up event with in-house corporate counsel at the Law Society of NSW (see story and photos), and with planning for the Centre’s inaugural Research Roundtable to be held on 8 October 2018, which aims to explore the possibility of partnering with others to expand the Centre’s research capability.
The program for the 7th National Access to Justice and Pro Bono Conference to be held in Canberra from 14-15 March 2019 is well-advanced and will provide an interesting diversity of sessions and speakers. Further details should appear shortly on a new dedicated conference website. Please put these dates in your diaries.
This month we also interview Malcom McCusker QC who has taken over as Chair of Law Access in WA, and profile two pro bono team members who were promoted mid-year: Sara Lane at Ashurst and Rebecca Dominguez at Baker McKenzie.
We have two stories about Colin Biggers Paisley: a video interview with Karen Iles, Director of Pro Bono and Responsible Business, and a report on the firm’s recent staff Artists in the Black Challenge tour of Central Australia for the Arts Law Centre. Last but not least, don’t forget to say hi to our new secondee Trent Wallace.