Access and equity
Legal Aid WA has a range of services to help people with their legal problems. It is important that our services are accessible to everyone, including people in special need.
Our work ranges from helping individual clients, such as providing information and advice, to benefitting the wider community through legal education and advocacy.
We take into account the many financial and social factors that may cause problems for clients such as age, gender, disability, language difficulties, geographical location and financial stress.
We help people to deal with their legal problems by making sure our services are accessible and appropriate to their needs.
We aim to:
- improve how people access legal services and participate in the justice system
- think about all of the legal needs a person might have
- target legal assistance for people who experience, or are at risk of experiencing, social exclusion
- help people avoid legal problems, and resolve them earlier, through relevant education, information, advice and referrals, and
- enhance how different service providers in the legal sector work together and alongside each other.
Access to our services is vital, particularly for people and groups within the community who are faced with multiple disadvantages or legal issues.
This free telephone service provides people with help over the phone, including legal information and referrals to legal and non-legal services.
Callers receive a preliminary assessment of their legal issue, have their options explained at the earliest opportunity, and are referred to the most appropriate forms of legal and non-legal assistance.
There is a dedicated line to enable prisoners to access this service.
Community legal education
We provide community legal education to help build knowledge in the community about legal rights and responsibilities. Our focus is on early intervention to prevent legal problems from arising or escalating. This is undertaken through:
- producing a range of plain-language publications and resources to help people work out their legal problems. This includes self-help kits to allow people to deal with their legal problems in circumstances where they may not have a lawyer representing them
- providing in person legal information to specific groups of people such as school students and prisoners
- producing educational kits for community workers and teachers to present to specific audiences such as young people, older people, people living with a disability and people newly arrived to Australia
- collaborating with organisations across Western Australia and Australia to share resources, identify common issues and develop national community legal education strategies.
Justice and law reform
Through advocating for justice and law reform, we aim to improve the way laws operate and impact on the community.
Our work in this area is heavily informed by our practice work in family, criminal and civil law, which helps identify opportunities for reform within the justice system.
Our Disability Access and Inclusion Plan
Sets out our commitment to ensuring that people with a disability can fully access the services provided by Legal Aid WA, to offer them the same opportunities, rights and responsibilities as other people in the community.
Our Reconciliation Action Plan and First Nations Strategic Plan
Sets out how we seek to improve how Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people access legal services.
Reviewed: 20 April 2018