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The Commission is reorganising as a result of Commonwealth and State government budget cuts.
The total LSC budget is being reduced by $10 million over four years. In response, the Commission is removing 9% of its staff positions through Voluntary Separation Packages. The Commission is also reviewing and reorganising its internal processes to ensure the optimum level of service is provided in the most economical manner. 
The funding cuts mean there will be no fee scale increase this financial year for legal practitioners undertaking legal aid cases.  Caps have been placed on the number of funded pre-trial conferences, and reduced circumstances now apply as to when a transfer of a grant of legal aid will be approved.
“Savings measures are in place to deal with the budget cuts,” said LSC Director Gabrielle Canny. “It is now business as usual at the Commission - albeit in a tightened funding environment.  Operational reorganisation, the VSP departures and changes to external payments have put us on track to achieve our savings goals.”
 


 



Rosie Batty (centre) meeting with family law and advice staff.

Rosie Batty has praised the Commission’s assistance for victims of domestic violence.
The Australian of the Year recently visited the Commission to talk with staff about their work in this field.
“I was incredibly impressed by your facilities and your passionate and committed staff,” Ms Batty said. “You’ve got a very experienced team at the Commission and your new facilities really demonstrate how well set up you are to deal with the problem.
I really appreciated the opportunity to understand how much you do in the community. You’ve also got many people going out into different communities – including culturally and linguistically diverse groups  – to help them understand how they can obtain legal advice from the beginning.”
 


Remembering Selvie’s achievements. (L-R) Aaron Frolow, Sarah Graham, Andrew English, Jane Bochmann and Lauren Hanna.

Commission lawyer Selvie Demiri has been honoured with a Justice Award at the Law Society Annual Dinner.
The prestigious award recognises the outstanding work of legal practitioners who promote access to justice, particularly for socially and economically disadvantaged people.
Selvie died last December and is greatly missed by her colleagues at the Commission.
Selvie is the fourth Commission lawyer to receive this honor since the Justice Awards began in 2004.
 





Growing numbers of South Australians are embracing the Commission’s legal information webinars.

Around 600 people have tuned in for the online sessions since they were launched two years ago. They’ve proved particularly popular in regional areas such as Port Lincoln, Mount Gambier and the Riverland. The free webinars can now be viewed using a webcast player on a desktop computer or mobile device.
The sessions focus on a variety of topics such as family law and child support, as well as legal issues of particular interest to seniors, young people and migrants. Our consumer protection law sessions are also popular, as well as those covering Advance Care Directives and wills.
During the sessions, a Commission lawyer delivers a presentation seen simultaneously by a live audience and an audience joining in by webcast. Both audiences can ask questions in real time.
The webinars are available to South Australians in metropolitan and country areas. To learn more about our webinar program – click here
 


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