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Working Group on Access to Justice for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Communities

Report to NLAF - February 2009

The Working Group on Access to Justice for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Communities met on 5 February 2009.

The NLAF Project Manager co-ordinated a meeting with the NSW Deputy State Director Department of Immigration and Citizenship, Director Multicultural Affairs and Settlement Branch and Director Integrated Humanitarian Settlement Schemes Operation to promote NLAF activities and facilitate awareness of free legal services for CALD communities. The Multicultural Affairs and Settlement Branch can provide a co-ordinated pathway to settlement service workers and community liaison officers.

As a result of the meeting the Branch will:

  • Email networks about services and new initiatives
  • Co-ordinate training sessions for settlement workers
  • Provide advice on community leaders for consultation
  • Include NLAF in Conference proceedings

Progress Reports

Liverpool Legal Access Project

The Liverpool Legal Access Project Subgroup met on the 19 January 2009 and 24 February 2009.

The aim of the project is to develop an interagency cooperation model by focusing on improving access to legal assistance services in two communities. The communities selected represent an established (Fijian) and newly arrived (Iraqi) communities in Liverpool.

Progress since the last report includes:

  • Development of the evaluation strategy
  • Planning of consultations with the communities in March and April 2009. These consultations are being co-ordinated by the Liverpool Migrant Resource Centre.
  • Investigating consultations with service providers through the Liverpool Refugee & Migrant Interagency.

Sudanese Community Project

The Working Party met on the 23 December 2008 and 12 February 2009. A list of legal resources for the Sudanese Community will be available on the NLAF website and indexed on LawAccess Online.

The Working Party is exploring options to provide a resource/court assistance volunteers to assist members of the Sudanese communities at Blacktown Local Court.

The Public Interest Law Clearing House (PILCH) has a predatory lending project focusing on the Sudanese Community at Mount Druitt.

The working party is networking with existing interagency forums in the area. The NLAF Project Manager has coordinated a presentation to the SydWest Multicultural Service Interagency meeting on 27 March 2009. A presentation to the Blacktown Emerging Communities Action Plan (BECAP) is planned for April 2009.