QAILS Quarterly | September 2015

QAILS Quarterly


Highlighting the work of Queensland's community legal centres

Queensland community legal centres have over 30 years of service delivery experience providing free information, advice and referral, casework and representation to the community.  Read about our most recent work below.

Showcasing the work of our members...

Lisa, a single parent working part-time, believed passionately in human rights and equality. She planned a fundraising trek of the Inca Trail but shortly before she was due to depart she had to cancel her trip.  Read how Cairns CLC helped her get back her cancellation fees and deposit. 

Suncoast CLS kept two pensioners in their seventies from certain homelessness after QCAT issued a warrant of possession returning their rental home. Read how they did this here.

Basic Rights Queensland elderly client Sue, had taken a severely disabled child into her home and cared for her for decades. Their caseworker demonstrated that Centrelink had calculated the debt incorrectly.  Read how they successful argued a case to have the debut reduced. 

QAILS dinner at the NACLC 2015 confernce
QAILS dinner at the NACLC 2015 conference

Photos: QAILS dinner at the NACLC 2015 conference

The staff from QAILS recently returned from the National Association  of Community Legal Centres (NACLC) conference.  The theme for the conference was 'story telling.'  It was a great opportunity to reflect on what was working in Queensland, learn how other people deliver their services, catch up with old friends and meet some new ones.  The QAILS staff top picks from the conference were:

Jude – ‘I really loved the TED talks.  They were short, sharp, lively and engaging.  The one that really stood out for me was Lisa Craig from Peel Community Legal Service presentation called, ‘Saving Grace’ which talked about the role pets play in helping people experiencing violence.

Cathy – “I got a lot out of the presentation from Youth Law where they talked about the Street Smart website they built.  It helped clarify my thinking about how clients interact with social media and the web.'

Peter â€“ ‘I always enjoy the social elements of the NACLC conference.  I especially enjoyed the trip down memory lane presented by Bill Mitchell’s speech at the conference dinner.”

James -  It's always great to hear about the innovative new projects from CLCs across Australia. 

Bill – “I enjoyed having everyone out of the office so I could get some work done!’


Queensland's community legal centres in the spotlight

TASC appointed as the Queensland Representative for the National Ethnic Disability Alliance 

George Brandis: don't take away the community's right to protect our national natural wonders - Sign the EDO petition here.

QAILS calls for improvements to neighbourhood disputes laws 

The Robina Community Legal Centre have been made finalists in the Australian Law Awards

Member for Thuringowa Aaron Harper MP visited final year law students who provided free legal advice to members of the public in conjunction with JCU and the Townsville Community Legal centre

Research released by QAILS shows that a decrease in free legal advice on tenancy issues can directly impact on the number of people who become homeless.

Coordinating community legal information and publications: Consultation draft published by QAILS.

Member for Inala, Anastacia Palaszczuk has tabled a petition in the Queensland Parliament this Friday (17 July) calling on the government to provide funding for new facilities for the South West Brisbane Community Legal Centre.

Publications and Resources

Is Early Intervention Timely? Law & Justice Foundation of NSW Research.  This paper explores these assumptions in the context of the evidence-based priority given to assisting the most disadvantaged, and the need to do so within the scope and limited resources of the legal assistance sector. Download a copy of the document here.

“dis-Abled Justice: Reforms to justice for persons with disability in Queensland.”  Given the over-representation of people with disability and mental illness in the criminal justice system, the higher rates of recidivism of this group of vulnerable people, QAI published a book which offers recommendations for micro-reforms that would address many of the issues that inhibit the rehabilitation and reform.   To order a copy of the book go here.

Find a centre near you
If you're looking for services in your local area, our Centre Locator provides a map-based search of all accredited Community Legal Centres in Queensland.

Visit the QAILS website for more information about QAILS or Queensland's community legal centres.


National Partnership funding agreements signed, funding fight continues

Senate Inquiry into domestic violence: When are we going to see real action?
Queensland lagging behind nation on social justice issues

The Federal Government's approval for a multi-billion dollar Queensland mine has been overturned by the Federal Court because of two vulnerable species. Jo Bragg, Director, EDO interviewed across a range of media.

The Mornington Island's Community Justice Centre says problem drinking has continued despite a nine-year alcohol ban. Dr Berry Zondag, Mornington Island's Community Justice Centre, interviewed across a range of media.  

Queensland Labor Party members want bill of rights. Interview with James Farrell, QAILS Director in Brisbane Times, 31 August

Legal advice to help you find the right solution Cairns Community Legal Centre in the Cairns Sun on 18 August.

JCU set to widen free law service - Article quoting Alex Whitney, Townsville Community Legal Service Solicitor appeared on WIN TV Townsville and the Townsville Bulletin, Page 8 on 5 August 2015.

Homelessness on the rise in Toowoomba James Farrell from QAILS quoted across a range of media.

Do early intervention advocacy services prevent homelessness? Cristy Dieckmann from QAILS speaks to David Curnow ABC Queensland State-wide, 30 July, 2015.

Queensland lagging behind nation on social justice issues Interview with James Farrell, QAILS Director in Brisbane Times, 25 July.

Interview with Kara Cook, WLQ, The X Ordinary Blog, 14 July 2015

Saskia Edwards went to Nundah Neighbourhood Centre to find out about their legal service, 612 ABC Radio, 15 July 2015


Inquiry into the adequacy of existing financial protections for Queensland's seniors 
Townsville Community Legal Service
Hervey Bay Seniors Legal and Support Service
Caxton Legal Centre
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service (Qld)

Inquiry into the review of the Crime and Corruption Committee

Inquiry into the Electoral and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2015
QAILS, Human Rights Law Centre, ATSILS and Caxton Legal Centre

Inquiry into the Sustainable Ports Development Bill 2015

National Disability Advocacy Framework
Basic Rights Queensland

QAILS events

14 September QAILS webinar on recovering unpaid wages with Michael Murray, Townsville CLS. Register here.

17 September QAILS webinar on working with children and young people in CLCs with Katrina Jefferson, YAC. Register here.

22 to 23 October QAILS workshop.  Register here.

Sector events

10/09/15 - The Michael Whincop Memorial Lecture 
10/09/15 - Decision-Making in Context
14/09/15 - Advocacy Forum and Workshop
14/09/15 - A dialogue about a Human Rights Act for Queensland
17/09/15 - Dr Dominic O’Sullivan QC on Lord Blackburn
23/09/15 - The Road to Refugee Rights
24/09/15- Family Violence as a Challenge
24/09/15 - Homes for Homes Industry Breakfast
28/09/15 - National Indigenous Men’s and Women’s Conference
29/09/15 - The Right Honourable the Lord Judge on Magna Carta
29/09/15 - Magna Carta: Destiny or Accident?
30/09/15 - Making arrangements for children Part 2
06/10/15 - Public interest environmental litigation seminar
09/10/15 - World Day against the Death Penalty 2015 Dinner
09/10/15 - 10 things your clients need to know about credit
13/10/15 - QCOSS State Conference
15/10/15 - QUT Faculty of Law Annual Comedy Debate
22/10/15 - Basic Right’s Queensland Birthday Celebration
27/10/15 - TJMF Annual Lecture
28/10/15 - Domestic Violence: Standard Conditions

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