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Welcome to the Law and Justice Foundation of NSW

New Director appointed
December 2022

We are pleased to announce the appointment of the Foundation’s new Director, Ms Olivia Nguy.

Olivia brings to the Foundation a wealth of leadership experience with a combination of social policy, community development, advocacy and strategic planning skills. Her passion for social impact has seen her lead and develop Detour House, delivering residential services for girls and women experiencing homelessness, after holding key responsibilities at the Western Sydney Migrant Resource Centre for many years.

This is an exciting time for the Foundation as we welcome her to the team, and look forward to a great future ahead in supporting access to justice.

The Board of the Foundation welcomes Olivia, and takes the opportunity to thank Andrew Smith for his significant contribution in his role as Acting Director over the last ten months. His hard work and dedication have been invaluable during this pivotal year for the Foundation.

Olivia will commence in post on a part time basis in January 2023, moving to full time in March.

Data resource

Community groups - 2021 Census Data Update
December 2022

A new resource providing easy access to the most recent available data on community groups relevant to the sector, including NLAP priority client groups.
Based on ABS 2021 Census data.

Download Excel spreadsheet here >

Foundation Dashboards

Criminal Finalisations Dashboard
July 2021 | Using criminal courts data to inform service planning

The Criminal Finalisations Dashboard is an interactive dashboard to facilitate interrogation and analysis of court data to support service planning at state and local level across NSW.

Access the dashboard >

National Legal Needs Dashboard launched
February 2021

The National Legal Needs Dashboard is an interactive online data tool to assist in identifying potential legal need in the community and help legal assistance services in Australia to be planned according to need.

Access the dashboard >

Discussion papers

Designing legal needs surveys
Legal needs surveys are the most reliable way to gain an understanding of the legal needs of the community but design is key to their usefulness.
This paper explores the factors that need to be taken into account, such as who should participate? What sort of questions should be asked? What types of problems should be examined?
... read more

Download Justice Issues paper 31

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The Law and Justice Foundation of NSW is an independent statutory body established to:
  • contribute to the development of a fair and equitable justice system
  • that addresses the legal needs of the community
  • and improves access to justice by the community, particularly for socially and economically disadvantaged people.

We assist the legal and justice sector by providing empirical research evidence, analytical advice and comprehensive data tools to support planning and service delivery.

Read more about the Foundation >

An Analysis of Legal Aid service data: two Jurisdictional Profiles
New South Wales Profile 2018-19
Northern Territory Profile 2020-21
November 2022 | This report presents an analysis of Legal Aid service delivery data in New South Wales and the Northern Territory.

Service delivery data provides an opportunity to better understand what types of legal assistance services are provided, where, for what legal problems, and to which client profiles. This report explores the potential insights that can be gained from this valuable resource.

In exploring the broader question of whether service delivery data is a suitable source of evidence to guide policy decisions, we reiterate that such data is an important factor, yet only one of many to be considered in the development of planning strategies.

Download the report >

Legal Assistance Services Outcomes Frameworks: A Rapid Scoping Review
July 2022 | This report draws together evidence relevant to framework development, shared outcomes, and sector-wide frameworks and collates information on how outcomes frameworks are currently used within the legal assistance sector nationally and internationally.

The successful use of outcomes frameworks as part of an outcomes-based approach to service design has many benefits by putting people’s needs at the centre of design and delivery. An outcomes-based approach leads to continuous improvement by building evidence about what works and why and drives innovation to achieve even better outcomes. Outcomes frameworks are increasingly being adopted across many and diverse sectors. The information contained in this report may be of value in informing the development of sector-wide outcomes frameworks for legal assistance services in Australia.

Download the report >

Coroners Courts - A review of the research literature on improving court experiences for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Families
July 2021 | This report provides a sound base for reviewing culturally sensitive processes and practices within the coronial system, particularly for supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families.

Coroners courts in many jurisdictions throughout Australia are seeking ways to ensure their processes and practices are culturally sensitive, particularly for supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islands families. This report provides a sound base for reviewing culturally sensitive practices within the coronial system. It does this by describing variations in service provision across Australian jurisdictions to characterize current practices, and by analysing key literature to guide discussion and further services development.

Download the report >

Criminal Finalisations background research papers
July 2021 | Using criminal courts data to inform service planning

Locating legal assistance demand: using courts data to support legal service planning for First Nations people in NSW. This report presents an analysis of criminal finalisations with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander defendants by court locations in NSW over a five-year period, from 2012 to 2016. Access the report >

Using court data to support planning legal assistance for First Nations people. This report is a feasibility study to explore the possibility to expand the model designed for NSW to the national level. It includes an assessment of data availability across all jurisdictions in 2018, and an analysis of Queensland Courts statistics over the period 2013-14 to 2017-18. Access the report >

Law informed: The value of telephone legal information services to clients
December 2020

Do telephone legal information services fill a valuable place in the legal assistance landscape? Under its Research Alliance with Victoria Legal Aid (VLA), the Law and Justice Foundation of NSW followed up clients of VLA’s Legal Help over three months after their initial telephone call. Legal Help’s information and referral service is available to anyone in the Victorian community and is the main gateway for legal assistance to the general public and the entry point for legal triage to more intensive service providers. The research assessed the value of information services based on the following criteria: reach to the community, accessibility to clients, appropriateness of services provided, client experience, actions promoted and client outcomes. Download the report >

Access to justice and the COVID-19 pandemic
September 2020

Co-published by the OECD and the Law and Justice Foundation of New South Wales, this policy brief focuses on the immediate and medium-term consequences of the COVID-19 crisis for justice systems and their users, and proposes examples of steps that can be taken during this period to support access to justice. It discusses nine key lessons, from research and practices across the globe that justice systems can draw on to develop stronger people-centred practices and contribute to an inclusive economic recovery.
Download the report >

The Law and Justice Foundation of New South Wales does not provide legal advice or referrals. If you need legal information, advice or assistance, please contact LawAccess on 1300 888 529, or visit