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Plain Language Law newsletter No. 110
April 2021
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Youth Week NSW, 16–24 April

To mark Youth Week NSW for 2021, we are kicking off this edition of Plain Language Law with a selection of community legal education and plain language law resources relevant to the legal problems encountered by young people.

Webinars and resources

Webinar | What are my legal rights? Young people and civil law
Legal Aid NSW
Thursday, 15 April 2021, 10-11am
This webinar is for workers with young people and young people themselves. Lawyers from Legal Aid NSW will talk about common civil law problems experienced by young people like buying stuff, work, fines and renting. Register here »

 

Webinar | Your rights under anti-discrimination law in NSW
Legal Aid NSW
Tuesday, 27 April 2021, 10.30-11.30am
In this webinar from Legal Aid NSW, you will hear from Anti-Discrimination NSW about their role and how you can help your clients if they have been unfairly treated. Register here »

Podcast | Extra help with your fines – Revenue NSW Hardship Program for young people and First Nations people
Legal Aid NSW
In this episode of Legal Aid NSW’s Law for Community Workers podcast, Revenue NSW talks about their new Hardship Program and how lawyers can help vulnerable clients with their fines to stop enforcement action and added costs. Listen here »

Resources | Legal Information for Young People
Legal Information Access Centre (LIAC), State Library of NSW
LIAC provides a useful collection of legal information resources for young people. This includes links to a general handbook of legal rights for young people, factsheets and resources on specific legal issues such as employment rights, car accidents and vehicle damage, renting, and the police. LIAC also offers links to organisations that provide legal help to young people. Access resources »
 

Workshops for schools and young people 

Legal Aid NSW provides specialised legal education sessions for young people, teachers, and community workers that promote a better understanding of the law and how it can affect young people. Specialist solicitors from their Community Legal Education Branch help young people know their rights, understand their responsibilities and know where to go if they need help. To request a talk or book a session, email cle@legalaid.nsw.gov.au.

A selection is presented below. For a full list, click here
 
Let’s talk about consent
This workshop covers legal definitions of sexual consent, offences relating to non-consent, as well as ethical consent frameworks. The session includes case studies, videos and interactive quizzes. Suitable for years 10 to 12.
Burn
This is a crime prevention workshop looking at the laws around group offending (joint criminal enterprise) and robbery offences. This workshop also covers young people’s rights in custody. The workshop includes a film, and students can see interviews with the characters, examine their actions from other points of view, and learn more about legal rights. A study guide is included.
 
Putting the X in sexy text
This interactive ‘choose-your-own-adventure’ style animation explores the criminal outcomes of sexting and cyberbullying in a way that young people can understand and relate to. The workshop tells the story of two young people who are navigating the pitfalls of digital communication, selfies and online life. They are then presented with the criminal law implications of their choices.

Suitable for years 7 to 10.

Community legal education 

Webinar | Top Legal Tips for Not-for-profit Organisations
Justice Connect
Tuesday, 13 April, 12.45pm
This webinar from Justice Connect’s Not-for-profit Law team will provide a simple, practical overview of the top legal issues faced by not-for-profits. Topics include understanding the organisation’s rules/constitution and legal purpose, clarifying the legal status of people involved in your organisation, safety, risk and insurance considerations, and financial reporting requirements. Each tip comes with links to further guides, checklists and resources to help you apply your knowledge in your community organisation.
Register »

 

Webinar | Social Security – Families and Children
Welfare Rights Centre
Wednesday, 21 April, 3-5pm
This session from the Welfare Rights Centre outlines Centrelink payments targeting families and children, including Parenting Payment, Family Tax Benefit, Parental Leave Pay, Dad and Partner Pay, Carer Payment and Child Care Subsidy. It will also cover other payments accessed by many parents such as JobSeeker Payment and Disability Support Pension. The speakers will address eligibility requirements, income and assets tests, mutual obligations relating to work, and the way that the number and age of children affects different payments. The session will explain how relationship status (single/partnered) affects payment and will outline Centrelink payments intended to support people trying to escape, or who have recently left, situations of domestic violence. Register »

 

Webinar | Drafting a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)
Justice Connect
Tuesday, 27 April, 12.45pm
In the wake of 2020 and the uncertainty arising from COVID-19, it’s more important than ever that organisations work together to support the community. When you combine forces with another group, it's important to record the details of how you plan to collaborate. This webinar is as an interactive how-to guide for drafting an effective 'memorandum of understanding', or MOU. 
Register »   

 

Webinar | The Lighthouse Project
Women's Legal Service NSW
Wednesday, 5 May, 11-11.45am
The Lighthouse Project recently commenced in the Federal Circuit Court of Australia's Adelaide, Brisbane and Parramatta registries. The project is piloting a new approach to screening for family violence and other safety risks, with a primary focus on improving outcomes for children and families involved in the family law system. This webinar from Women’s Legal Service NSW will provide an overview of the project and how each stage works. Register »

 

Webinar | Social Security for Seniors
Welfare Rights Centre
Thursday, 20 May, 10am-12pm
This session from the Welfare Rights Centre will address the differences between Age Pension, Carer Payment, Carer Allowance, Carer Supplement and Bereavement Allowance, including factors to consider if a person is able to choose between different payments and how to transfer to Age Pension from another payment. It will cover Rent Assistance, the Pension Loan Scheme, the Energy Supplement and other Centrelink crisis payments. It will also outline different concession cards including the Health Care Card, Pensioner Concession Card, and the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card. Register »

 

Webinar | Property Settlements and Spousal Maintenance
Women's Legal Service NSW
Wednesday, 2 June, 11-11.45am
This webinar from Women’s Legal Service NSW will provide a quick guide to what clients should think about when preparing to negotiate property settlements and spousal maintenance. The webinar will be presented by Rishika Pai, Solicitor, Women’s Legal Service NSW. Register »

 

Webinar | How to Spot a Social Security Issue and What to do Next
Welfare Rights Centre
Tuesday, 8 June, 3-5pm
Hosted by the Welfare Rights Centre, this session will give attendees the tools to identify a social security problem, including those masked by other pressing or complex issues. It will provide an overview of social security and family assistance rules, payments and Centrelink's administrative process, and will also outline common social security issues. The session will outline the kinds of questions to ask to get to the key legal issues and work through the best approach to resolve, including how to support client’s interactions with Centrelink and how to make targeted referrals to the Welfare Rights Centre. Register »

 

Webinar recording | Fines 101
Legal Aid NSW
This webinar is for anyone who assists people with NSW fines. Presenters from Legal Aid NSW’s Work and Development Order Service speak about NSW Fines Law and options available for dealing with fines-related debt to prevent Revenue NSW enforcement action. Watch the recording »

 

Webinar recording | Bringing your family to Australia (English and Arabic)
Legal Aid NSW
Hosted by Legal Aid NSW, this webinar looks at hosting or bringing family members to live in Australia. Topics covered include the temporary and permanent pathways for immigration, whether visa applications for people offshore are being processed during the COVID-19 pandemic, the process to obtain exemptions from the current travel ban, and whether there are any financial hardship provisions for hotel quarantine. The webinar is presented by Mariam Hammoudy, solicitor with the Legal Aid Immigration Team at Legal Aid NSW and is available in English and Arabic.

Guides to the law

Factsheets | Accessing information from NSW Police via GIPA
Redfern Legal Centre
Redfern Legal Centre has released three new factsheets that explain your right to access information from NSW Police under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (NSW) (GIPA), including information on the application process, the documents you can seek, time limits and appeals.

Download the factsheets »

Factsheet | Medical Exemptions from Mutual Obligations
Economic Justice Australia
Prepared by Economic Justice Australia, this factsheet provides information on obtaining medical exemptions from mutual obligation requirements that apply to particular social security recipients such as the Jobseeker Payment, Youth Allowance and Parenting Payment. The factsheet includes information on how to obtain the exemption, how long it lasts, what to do if an exemption request is rejected, and what to do if conditions get worse. Download the factsheet here »

See the full range of EJA self-help resources »

Factsheets | Women Affected by Natural Disasters
Women's Legal Service NSW
In response to the 2020 bushfire crisis and recent floods, Women’s Legal Service NSW compiled some information to help women who have been affected by natural disasters. Topics covered include family law parenting issues, child support and potential AVO impacts. Read more »
 

Website | Pedal Power: Cycling and the law in NSW
Redfern Legal Centre
Redfern Legal Centre has updated its Pedal Power website, which provides information on the law and legal system in NSW concerning people riding bikes. It includes information on road rules for riding, where you can ride, insurance, accidents and injuries, damage to property, dangerous driver behaviour, and links to other useful resources. Visit the website »

Newsletter | Housing News Digest
Tenants’ Union of NSW
The newly launched Housing News Digest compiles a selection of relevant tenancy and housing stories from across the media. It is sent every Monday and Thursday at 10am.
More details »

Factsheet | Changes to casual employment – industrial relations reforms
Fair Work Ombudsman
On 26 March 2021, the Fair Work Act 2009 was amended to change workplace rights and obligations for casual employees. The changes came into effect on 27 March 2021. The Fair Work Ombudsman has provided a summary of the changes. Access here »

Factsheets from Legal Aid NSW in relation to COVID-19
 

Legal Aid NSW has produced a range of resources and collated resources from other Government departments to assist individuals affected by legal issues during COVID-19. A range of factsheets about COVID-19 and the law are available on the Legal Aid NSW website. These factsheets may be useful for sharing with your colleagues or with clients who are seeking clarification about the Public Health Orders or other everyday legal problems during the pandemic.
  • Public Health Orders
  • Courts, police and crime
  • Domestic violence
  • Families, relationships and children
  • Government, social security and rights
  • Housing and tenancy
  • Jobs and employment
  • Money, debt and fines
  • Practitioner resources
  • Resources from other government organisations
The full suite of Legal Aid NSW factsheets can be found at the COVID-19 resource hub
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About this newsletter

This newsletter is produced by the Law and Justice Foundation of NSW with assistance from the Legal Information Access Centre (LIAC) at the State Library of NSW. 
 
Want more plain language legal information?
Visit Find Legal Answers 
Visit LawAccess NSW or call 1300 888 529
© Law and Justice Foundation of NSW, 2020.
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