The Civil and Family Law Needs of Indigenous People in WA

Allison, Fiona, Schwartz, Melanie, and Cunneen, Chris (2014) The Civil and Family Law Needs of Indigenous People in WA. Report. Cairns Institute, James Cook University, Cairns, QLD, Australia.

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Background: This report presents key findings and recommendations of research conducted in 2012 - 2014 by the Indigenous Legal Needs Project (ILNP) in Western Australia (WA). 1 The ILNP is a national project, which aims to:

• identify and analyse the legal needs of Indigenous communities in non - criminal areas of law (including discrimination, housing and tenancy, child protection, employment, credit and debt, wills and estates, and consumer - related matters); and

• provide an understanding of how legal service delivery might work more effectively to address identified civil and family law needs of Indigenous communities.

ILNP research is intended to benefit Indigenous people by improving access to civil and family law justice.

Methodology: The WA research is based on focus groups with Indigenous participants and interviews with legal and related stakeholders. The eight communities selected in WA for the ILNP research were Balgo, Fitzroy Crossing, Geraldton, Laverton, Narrogin, Perth, Roebourne and Wyndham – representing a cross section of urban, regional and rural communities.

Sixteen focus groups were held with a total of 156 Indigenous community members in these eight WA communities. Separate women and men's focus groups were conducted in each community. Female participants comprised 53.2% of total participants and male participants 46.8%.

Focus group participants completed a questionnaire (see Appendix A ), which covered issues including housing and tenancy, neighbourhood disputes, wills and intestacy, victims' compensation, stolen generations and stolen wages, employment, social security, family matters, discrimination, accident and injury, education, credit and debt, consumer issues and taxation. Some civil law issues not identified in the questionnaire arose in focus group discussions and in stakeholder interviews (see Section 4.14 of the Report).

Over 70 stakeholder organisations servicing or working within the nominated WA communities were also interviewed to explore the experiences, perspectives and understandings of those providing legal or related services. A full list of stakeholders interviewed in WA can be found in Appendix B of the Report.

Item ID: 37250
Item Type: Report (Report)
ISBN: 978-0-9941500-1-1
Related URLs:
Additional Information:

A report of the Australian Indigenous Legal Needs Project in association with Larissa Behrendt and the Jumbunna Indigenous House of Learning.

This report is licenced under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia licence. You are free to copy, communicate and adapt this work, so long as you attribute James Cook University [The Cairns Institute] and the authors.

Funders: Australian Research Council (ARC)
Projects and Grants: ARC Linkage Project LP100200455
Date Deposited: 15 Sep 2016 01:41
FoR Codes: 18 LAW AND LEGAL STUDIES > 1801 Law > 180101 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Law @ 100%
SEO Codes: 94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9404 Justice and the Law > 940405 Law Reform @ 50%
94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9404 Justice and the Law > 940401 Civil Justice @ 50%
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