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2017 funding cliff

Community legal centres are independent, community organisations providing equitable and accessible legal services.

We help almost 60,000 people each year

But we’re unable to help half of the people who approach us, because we just don’t have the resources.

A 30% Federal funding cliff will mean we’re turning away even more vulnerable Queenslanders. We need your help!

Can you support the community legal centres that support your community?

  • Ask the Federal AG to reverse funding cuts
  • Ask for additional state government funding
  • Visit your local centre to find out more about their services
  • Stay in touch with your local centre to make sure your community isn’t missing out

Community Legal Centres are of their communities and responsive to their communities. ‘Communities’ may be geographic communities, as for generalist community legal centres, or communities of interest, as for specialist community legal centres that may target a group (eg. children) or a particular area of law (eg. tenancy).

Community legal centres are able to offer appropriate, effective and creative solutions based on their experience within their community. It is this community relationship that distinguishes community legal centres from other legal services. It is this community relationship that makes community legal centres essential and vital organisations.

While providing legal services to individuals, community legal centres also work beyond the individual. Community legal centres initiate community development, community legal education and systemic advocacy that are preventative in outcome and that strengthen the community.

The clients of community legal centres are those who are facing injustice, who can’t afford a private lawyer, and whose life circumstances are affected by their legal problem.

Community legal centres harness the energy and expertise of thousands of volunteers across the country. Centres are committed to collaboration with government, legal aid, the private legal profession and community partners to ensure the best outcomes for their clients and the system of justice in Australia

In 2015-16, community legal centres helped almost 60,000 vulnerable Queenslanders, but had to turn away over 55,000. That means we can help just half of the people who ask for our assistance, because we just don’t have the resources we need to provide help for everyone who qualifies.

In 2017, the Commonwealth Government will cut almost 30% of funding to community legal centres across Australia. While it spends over $700m on its own lawyers, it can’t find $1.9m to continue providing legal help to Queenslanders facing legal crisis.

The Queensland Government has taken on the responsibility for distributing these Commonwealth funds, and applications are now open for this allocation process.

We need your help!

The Commonwealth Government will cut funding to Queensland community legal centres by about 30% from 1 July next year.  We need your help to prevent the cuts to our services!

Tell federal MPs (esp Attorney-General Brandis) that this cut should be reversed. We’re advocating hard (including sending another delegation to Canberra in a few weeks), but we really need you to stand with us.

Encourage the state government to meet this shortfall – while we’re disappointed with the Federal Government’s decision, we all need to focus on the vulnerable people that won’t be able to access services.