Community Legal Projects To Improve Access To Justice For Victorians

Thirteen community organisations will receive a total of almost $2 million through the Victorian Legal Services Board (VLSB) 2015 grants round for projects that improve education and access to legal services.

Attorney-General Martin Pakula said the grants will help fund projects that aim to improve access to justice for the most vulnerable people in our community.

The funding assists a range of organisations to provide targeted legal services at a community level across a range of areas, including youth justice, family violence, and consumer law. For example, one grant will help Deakin University explore legal responses to ‘one punch’ homicide in Victoria.

This project will document the context within which one-punch homicides occur and provide legal practitioners’ views of current practices and future needs for reform.

Another grant provided to the Mental Health Legal Centre and Royal District Nursing Service will assist in developing a pilot to provide increased access to justice to vulnerable groups of Victorians with multiple complex needs.

The VLSB is an independent statutory authority, responsible for regulation of the legal profession in Victoria.

The annual VLSB grants funding round for law-related services and activities that benefit the community is funded through the Public Purpose Fund, administered by the Board.

Quotes attributable to Attorney General Martin Pakula

“I congratulate the Victorian Legal Services Board for its careful selection of worthy projects, all of which target community legal education, research and reform.”

“Each grant recognises the role the Victorian community has to play in informing and reforming the law, and I look forward to seeing the results of this important work.”

Quotes attributable to Chairperson of the Victorian Legal Services Board Fiona Bennett

“The organisations who have received funding in this latest round will play a vital role in identifying and addressing unmet legal needs within the Victorian community.”

“The diverse range of projects funded will provide improved access to justice and increase all Victorians’ understanding of their legal, consumer and human rights.”

‘With nearly $30 million awarded since 2007, the Board’s Grants Program has invested heavily in Victorian community justice projects.”


Victorian Legal Services Board 2015 Grant Recipients

Project Duration/funding
Deakin University Legal responses to once punch homicide in Victoria 1 year/$24,000
Gippsland Community Doing our Duty: Increasing access to justice in Gippsland 1.5 years/$49,445
Human Rights Law Centre Realising the potential of Victoria’s Human Rights Charter 2 years/$68,995
Mental Health Legal Centre Partners in the Community: Mental Health Legal Centre and Royal District Nursing Service Homeless Persons Project 2 years/$239,800
Youthlaw Smart Justice for Young People: building the case for youth justice reinvestment 2 years/$230,000
The Youth Junction Inc. Youth community and law program 1 year/$150,000
Aboriginal Family Violence Prevention & Legal Service Employment of policy and advocacy officer 1.5 years/$100,000
Western Community Legal Centre Ltd Cradle to Grave: health agency to court 2 years/$200,000
Centre for Innovative Justice, RMIT Restorative Justice Conferencing: an innovative approach to serious driving offences 2 years/$200,000
Consumer Action Law Centre Owning your own home – on your terms, not vendor terms 1 year/$100,000
Hume Riverina Community Legal Service The Invisible Hurdles: better outcomes for young people experiencing family violence in North East Victoria 2 years/$220,000
Women’s Legal Service Victoria Small claims, large battles: improving access to justice for women with small property claims in family law 2 years/$250,000
Flemington Kensington Community Legal Centre Police Accountability and Human Rights Clinic 2 years/$143,156


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