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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Attorney-General and Minister for Industrial Relations
    The Honourable Cameron Dick

    Attorney-General marks Legal Aid milestones

    Attorney-General and Minister for Industrial Relations
    The Honourable Cameron Dick

    Wednesday, December 09, 2009

    Attorney-General marks Legal Aid milestones

    Attorney-General Cameron Dick has congratulated 22 Legal Aid Queensland staff for a combined 290 years of service of providing access to quality legal services.

    Mr Dick said Legal Aid Queensland, which also notched 30 years of service this month, played a very important role in the community, ensuring disadvantaged Queenslanders could access legal assistance and, ultimately, justice.

    “In 2008-09, 238,677 people were given immediate assistance through Legal Aid’s call centre; 51,818 people received free legal advice from a solicitor; and 38,004 applications for legal aid were approved,” Mr Dick said.

    “A further 66,740 people were represented in our Magistrates and Children’s courts by Legal Aid-funded duty lawyers.

    “These results cannot be achieved without the dedication and expertise of staff.”

    Mr Dick congratulated the Legal Aid Queensland staff who had achieved 10 or 20 years of service during 2009.

    The Legal Aid Queensland staff* honoured today were:
    • 20 years – David Bratchford, Linda Debenham, Bob Harms (Townsville), Sonia Marcius, Lynne O’Rourke, Carmen Pappin, Helen Wells (Bundaberg)

    • 10 years – Karen Anwyl (Rockhampton), Margaret Burton, Ingrid De Mamiel, Elizabeth Francis, Joanne Heywood, Beth Hull (Southport), Mary-Ann Huth, Christopher Inman, Patricia James, Loretta Kret, Yvette Nencov, Jeff Patterson, Christine Pemberton, Selena Rose, Jane Steinberg.

    Mr Dick also congratulated Legal Aid Queensland on 30 years of service to the Queensland community.

    Mr Dick said Legal Aid Queensland had opened its doors to the public in the old McArthur Chambers building in Queen Street on 3 December 1979.

    “The organisation started with 18 full-time lawyers, three part-time lawyers, 48 clerical staff and a budget of $6 million,” he said.

    “In 30 years, Legal Aid Queensland has grown to a staff of 480, including those working full-time and part-time, and the budget for this financial year is $114.6 million.

    “Legal Aid is now the state’s largest criminal and family law practice and one of the biggest providers of legal services in Australia.”

    In its 30 years of operation, Legal Aid Queensland has helped millions of people with their legal problems, providing free legal information, advice and representation to those who cannot afford their own legal representation.

    “Many of today’s well-known legal personalities, including numerous magistrates and judges, got their start in the law and built careers at Legal Aid Queensland,” Mr Dick said.

    “Today, the organisation remains an employer of choice for young law graduates because of the quality of training and depth of experience it can provide.”

    (*The staff members are Brisbane-based unless otherwise indicated.)

    Media contact: Attorney-General’s Office 3239 3487