Community Legal Centre Funding

At the eleventh hour the Federal Attorney-General, George Brandis, reversed his planned cuts to Community Legal Centres (CLCs) and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Services (ATSILS).

This is a very welcome backflip by the Government. It only only came after years of lobbying by the CLCs themselves, peak legal bodies such as the Queensland Law Society, the Australian Bar Association and the Law Council of Australia, alongside Labor with Shadow Attorney-General, Mark Dreyfus QC MP, leading the charge.

Sadly, the delay in reversing these cuts has come at a cost to many of the CLCs who have lost good employees. Not surprisingly people could not afford to wait around to see if their jobs were going to survive the fall off the funding cliff.

These vital legal services need stability and predictable funding. The important work CLCs and ATSILS do means they deserve better than the shabby treatment they have received from the Abbott and Turnbull Governments.

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