LEGAL AID NSW HELPING DOMESTIC VIOLENCE VICTIMS IN THE NORTHERN RIVERS
With White Ribbon Day on November 25 it is important to acknowledge the work of the Northern Rivers Community Legal Centre which assisted 622 women and children affected by domestic violence in the local area over the past year.
“In the last year the Northern Rivers Community Legal Centre service received $352,483.68 from the Baird-Grant Government to assist in the work they do,” Member for Tweed Geoff Provest said.
“This is part of the $7.75m Women’s Domestic Violence Court Advocacy Program which has assisted more than 22,000 women and children affected by domestic violence across NSW last financial year.
Member for Lismore Thomas George said “Under the service, victims of domestic violence are given help to obtain Apprehended Domestic Violence Orders by non-government organisations, operating in 114 courts across NSW, including Tweed Heads, Murwillumbah, Byron Bay, Ballina, Lismore, Casino and Kyogle.”
“The services, staffed by fully trained and dedicated staff, also refers victims to support services and help them with information about the legal process,” Mr George said.
The services are funded by Legal Aid NSW in 28 regions of the state.
Member for Ballina Don Page said “Preventing domestic violence remains a focus for the government, but it is comforting to know support is available for those who have experienced domestic violence and that there are services like this, which can give them information to make the court process less traumatic.”
The services funded under the program will also form a crucial role as Local Coordination Points under the government’s It Stops Here: Safer Pathway.
Last financial year Legal Aid NSW delivered a record of more than 1 million legal services in civil, family and criminal law.
“Legal Aid do so much more than many people realise – they also provide free legal advice, assistance and information on everyday issues, including fines, housing, debt, divorce, child support, harassment at work, or problems with consumer goods,” Mr Page said.
“They work with local organisations and regularly come to community and neighbourhood centres, court houses or libraries in 194 locations around the state to provide free advice and assistance on important legal issues.”