Interim Legal Service Provider for Torres Strait Islands and NPA Regions

Please be advised that as of the close of business today (30 June 2021), the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service (QLD) Ltd will no longer be providing legal assistance and community legal education services to communities throughout the Torres Strait Region and Northern Peninsula Area (NPA).

From 1 July 2021, The Torres Strait Regional Authority has appointed – Queensland Indigenous Family Violence Legal Service (QIFVLS) to deliver community legal education services and QIFVLS has also been engaged to provide interim legal services for communities Torres Strait and Northern Peninsula Area Regions.

If you, or your family, live in the Torres Strait or NPA region and need legal help call QIFVLS 1800 887 700.
ATSILS wish all involved in the interim arrangements (and beyond) all the very best.
ATSILS News

ATSILS Temporary Office Closures – during 3 day lock down period.

South East Queensland, Townsville, Palm Island and Magnetic Island are in the midst of a 3-day lockdown which started 6pm Tuesday 29 June 2021, to stop the spread of COVID-19. During this time ATSILS offices located within these regions will be closed.
Please be assured ATSILS (QLD) is still providing legal assistance for our clients via phone and ICT-based services where possible to protect our staff, clients and our communities from the spread of COVID-19.
If you need legal assistance during this time please stay in touch with your local ATSILS office or lawyer via phone! Please do not attend our offices within the listed lockdown regions during this time.
For a full list of office contacts please visit: www.atsils.org.au/contact

ATSILS (QLD) a joint winner at the 2021 Queensland Reconciliation Awards

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service (QLD) Ltd was a joint winner last night in the “Partnership” category of the 2021 Queensland Reconciliation Awards for our work with key partners in delivering the Northern Peninsula Area Licensing Muster Initiative.

 
We would like to extend our congratulations also to key partners involved in the initiative – Northern Peninsula Area Justice Services Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Corporation (NPA Community Justice Group) and Queensland Police Service (Bamaga Station).
 
The award is a great credit to our team up in the Torres Strait and NPA regions and in particular Annabelle Craft (our Prevention, Intervention and CLE Officer)– whose professionalism and hard work was a key driver of the partnership initiative.
 
We’d also like to acknowledge C’Zarke Maza our Regional Manager in the NPA and Torres Strait regions, who first raised the challenge surrounding unlicensed driving charges in the regions with the executive – which was then taken up at the departmental level by Shane Duffy our CEO. Whilst with departmental support the wheels were put in motion, it would have been easy for the initiative to grind to a halt – but with Annabelle at the steering wheel, such was never going to happen.
 
The Northern Peninsula Area Licensing Muster Initiative is a justice reinvestment strategy that has been providing cross-agency, holistic, evidence-based, proactive, and culturally safe support to the five communities of the NPA around licensing, registration, and identity documents since 2019.
 
The initiative aims to reduce unnecessary contact that Aboriginal peoples and Torres Strait Islander peoples experience with the criminal justice system related to driving and vehicle related offending. Such contact often leads to offenders being sent to correctional facilities located thousands of kilometres away from their community.
 
The initiative arose through prolonged observation of the high numbers of community members facing court action and punishment for non-violent driving-related offences, as well as social and economic exclusion. It appeared that many community members lacked sufficient or consistent primary identity documentation, immediately precluding them from accessing the services and opportunities many Australians take for granted.
 
Congratulations to Annabelle, the team and all partners involved. This initiative is a great example of the targeted impact justice reinvestment strategies can have on addressing the over-representation and unnecessary contact Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples experience in the justice system.
 
To read more on the success of this program visit:
ATSILS News

Team Maroochydore take part in the annual Law Week Walk

ATSILS MaroochydoreThe annual Law Week Walk was held on the 18th of May and the ATSILS Maroochydore team were out in force early at Cotton Tree on the Sunshine Coast to take part.
The team enjoyed hitting the pavement to support a good cause alongside colleagues from the legal fraternity including His Honour Judge Long of the District Court and Nambour Magistrates Court Registrar (and sometimes Acting Magistrate) Andrew Walker.
Below is a picture of the team Steph, Luke, Rod, Tim, Donna, Phoebe and Jordy, and Jordy’s daughter Elsie who was clearly the youngest participant by at least a couple of decades!
A great effort by Team Maroochydore.