Budget 2016: Turnbull government fails to reverse cuts to CLCs and Indigenous legal services

adminSocial security rights review

The Government has failed to take action in this Budget to reverse looming funding cuts for Legal Aid, Indigenous and Community Legal Centre services.  This includes a 25% drop in Commonwealth funding for Community Legal Centres in 2017, threatening the viability of many of these services. This is despite a Productivity Commission report recommending an increase of $200 million in funding for civil legal services.[1]

As the National Association of Community Legal Centres, the Law Council of Australia and others have warned this threatens the ability of these organisations (including our members) to provide services to the most vulnerable in the community.

The National Welfare Rights Network calls on both the Government and Opposition to commit to reversing these funding cuts following the upcoming election.

[1] Productivity Commission, “Access to justice arrangements: inquiry report” (2014), Recommendation 21.4, at http://www.pc.gov.au/inquiries/completed/access-justice.