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Taking the long view

Taking the long view

By Binny De Saram


Policy lawyer Binny De Saram sees law as a powerful tool for change. For Binny De Saram, it is the capacity of law and lawmakers to create social change that motivates her work as a policy solicitor and in her masters studies at Melbourne Law School. She attributes her desire to create social change to her parents. “Throughout my childhood, my parents were very vocal about the fact that everyone has a duty to help,” Ms De Saram says. After high school, she completed her bachelors of laws and science at the University of Queensland. At the same time, she undertook internships with the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia as well as the Queensland Public Interest Law Clearing House. For Ms De Saram, law was a natural fit. “I always saw the law as an amazing, dynamic process that could help effect broad systemic change. In essence, I really wanted to make a difference,” she says. After a stint at the Australian Government Solicitor in the commercial team, she has worked the last eight years as a senior policy solicitor at the Queensland Law Society, the peak body for legal practitioners in Queensland. “In my role I do a lot of public interest lobbying. I get to work with a passionate group of legal practitioners to advocate to the Queensland and federal governments for evidence-based, fair and practical policy and legislation.” The best element of her work is the variety of legal issues she comes across. “One day I might be looking at the review of parole boards and the next day I might be making submissions regarding the Universal Periodic Review. When I first started, one of the former corporate secretaries told me that you’ll never suffer from boredom at the Queensland Law Society – no truer words have been spoken.”

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