Reversal of legal service cuts draws broad media coverage

March 27, 2015 |

The Federal Attorney-General George Brandis yesterday announced the reversal of significant funding cuts to the legal assistance sector over 2015–16 and 2016–17 made as part of the Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook (MYEFO) process in December 2013.

The reversal of funding cuts included community legal centres, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Services (ATSILS), and State and Territory Legal Aid Commissions, but excluded Environment Defenders Offices, and the national Aboriginal legal peak NATSILS. Cuts planned for 2017–18 have also not been reversed.

The announcement confirmed that restrictions on advocacy imposed by the Attorney-General in July 2014 would be maintained.

In response to the announcement, the Federation and the National Association of Community Legal Centres issued media statements welcoming reversal of the cuts but highlighting continuing funding challenges, flawed implementation plans for broader sector reforms, and continuing advocacy restrictions on community legal centres.

A broad range of media reports resulted from these statements and media engagement by individual community legal centres and others, highlights of which are included here.

Further media reports are available via the National Association of Community Legal Centres website.

For media inquiries, please contact Darren Lewin-Hill, Communications Manager, on 0488 773 535.

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