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Council update

Every Issue

Cite as: August 2015 89 (8) LIJ, p.81

The LIV Council meets each month to decide issues of importance to members, the legal profession and the community. 

At the 18 June meeting, executives of the Law Council of Australia (LCA) attended. In other developments,

LIV director Misty Royce resigned from the Council effective 19 June 2015. During her tenure Ms Royce was a member of the LIV audit committee, which oversees LIV financial and risk management. She was also the LIV liaison representative to the Succession Law Section and Mornington Peninsula Law Association while managing her own busy suburban practice, which focuses on property, commercial and estate planning matters.

Expressions of interest for appointment as a casual vacancy until 31 December 2015 are being advertised in LawNews, the LIV’s new daily email to members.

LCA presentation

LCA president Duncan McConnel and secretary-general Martyn Hagan attended the Council meeting and reported on their priorities and plans for:

Implementation of recommendations of the National Attrition and Retention Study (NARS)
  • LCA hosted two roundtable events during the first quarter of 2015 aimed at identifying initiatives that promote diversity and equality and address the barriers to practice for parents.
  • The LIV has committed and adopted the NARS workshop’s Diversity and Equality Charter, which aims to promote the respect and inclusion of all legal professionals, regardless of sex, sexuality, disability, age, race ethnicity, religion and culture.
  • Other initiatives being developed include support for a train-the-trainer program to address unconscious bias, guidelines for those with family responsibilities who wish to take flexible work arrangements, and a commitment to promoting equitable briefing policies nationally.

    Advocacy and influence platform

  • The LCA’s national advocacy and lobbying platform for 2015 is focused on:

  • Ending the over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the justice system and reversing the rate of Indigenous imprisonment. The LCA has called on the federal government and the prime minister to restore funding to Indigenous family violence Prevention legal services.
  • Lobbying the federal government to adequately address legal assistance service funding and the true cost of legal assistance funding cuts and the social impact.
  • Advocating for government to reconsider the proposed citizenship laws, which would permit a minister to have discretion to remove citizenship from a person suspected of terrorist activity.
  • International strategy

  • The LCA’s international strategy is focused on creating access to overseas markets for Australian firms and the promotion of Australian lawyers. The LCA is currently working with China and South Korea as well as LawAsia and the South Pacific Lawyers Association.
  • Council charter passed

    Directors resolved to rescind the existing Council charter from 2011 and implemented a new charter to operate as a key corporate document for Council to continuously improve its governance processes and procedures.

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