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Legal outreach a rich brew

Legal outreach  a rich brew

By Karin Derkley

Voluntary Associations/Pro Bono 

Lawyers in Melbourne’s north are using coffee to take free legal advice to the community. It’s a Monday morning at the Lakes South Morang P-9 School and parents dropping off their children are milling about the little coffee van where lawyers Chris Howse and Moses Florendo are serving free coffee and free legal advice. While trained barista Mr Florendo churns out the lattes and flat whites, Mr Howse hands them out to the mums and dads and lets them know he and Mr Florendo are available one on one to talk about any legal problems they might have. He also takes the opportunity to promote the community legal education session happening a bit later on in the school library. The free coffee is the perfect way to get people to chat about issues they might not have felt comfortable approaching a regular lawyer with, Mr Howse says. “Because we’re there making them coffee, people feel comfortable to talk to us as normal people and that builds trust really quickly.”

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