Applications are now open for PLEA’s spring recruitment round.
The PLEA Project offers exceptional opportunities for law students to put their education into practice and work with some of Victoria’s most vulnerable people. Volunteers develop a deep understanding of areas of criminal and civil law, expand their presentation skills, and have access to unparalleled professional development and networking opportunities.
We are looking for law students with a passion for social justice, demonstrated commitment and a willingness to grow within our organisation. While study of criminal, family and migration law is valued, all content training is provided and not a prerequisite for the role.
Applicants for the spring round must be available to interview on Saturday 20th August. Interviews will be conducted in Melbourne and Geelong. For further information and to apply click here.
We want to thank the over 180 attendees who joined us for our inaugural Youth Justice Forum on Wednesday. With a robust and fascinating panel discussion, we are very happy to declare the event a success.
Our next event is already in the works for September 2016 with a focus on hearing from young people and understanding their experiences. We certainly hope you will join us and we will be in contact with further information closer to the date. In the meantime we would love to keep in touch with you, you can follow us on Facebook and connect on LinkedIn.
You had a chance to hear from our amazing team of volunteer presenters and gain a bit on an insight into the fantastic work that they do. The support of members of the legal community is integral to what we do. If you are interested in offering support, such as reviewing presentation content or providing training on a new area of law, we would love to hear from you and invite you to contact our Project Manager. If you are a law student and would be interested in volunteering as a presenter, you can find more information on our volunteering page.
Registration is now open!
The Prison Legal Education & Assistance Project is proud to host our inaugural Public Forum this June. Building on our organisation’s history of providing educative programs to incarcerated young people, the Forum will explore the experience of youth offenders through the justice system from pre-offending diversion programs through to the experience within a justice centre and post-release services.
The Forum will provide insight into the work currently being undertaken by a range of organisations and equip participants with learnings they can translate into their own work in the sector and the information to advocate for change across the system.
This event is free and open to the public, members of the legal community and students. We are very excited to announce our panel participants shortly.
The recent release of the Productivity Commission’s annual Report on Government Services has revealed a substantial increase in demand across the Victorian criminal justice space. The number of released prisoners who return to prison under sentence within two years is now at an all time high of above 44%. The number of individuals in prison and imprisonment rates have peaked both in Victoria and nationally.
Assault rates in Victorian prisons are higher than the national average and Victoria has the second lowest completion rate of CCOs of all Australian states – averaging just 65% over the last ten years.
As part of PLEA’s program expansion, we commenced presentations at the Melbourne Assessment Prison late 2015.
Due to the high turnover of remandees through MAP the program has experienced strong interest from inmates. With most attendees accessing our content at the beginning of their cases, we are presenting an adapted version of the Court Readiness package presented at MRC and DPFC. We are noting high levels of energy and sometimes anxiety from attendees. Conversations have been challenging across a range of topics including access to Aboriginal legal services and converting sentences across jurisdictions.
As with other remand centres, attendee demographics vary greatly. Inmates typically attend the presentation following their initial induction into MAP. This means we are working with some on their first day in a prison ever. For further information including volunteer opportunities, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Recruitment for our December round is now open. Please submit your application by 5pm on December 3rd to be considered. Candidates for this round must be available to complete an interview on December 5th to progress. If you are unable to attend on this date we still encourage you to submit an application and you will be considered for upcoming rounds of recruitment.
Volunteers present legal education programs to prisoners in justice centres across Melbourne. Our aim is to provide inmates with the knowledge and skills needed to gain control in an environment where they may feel powerless.
For more information visit our volunteers page.
Thank you to all that attended our annual trivia night on November 21st.
We hope you had an excellent night and we are excited to announce that the funds raised will cover operating costs well into next year. Photos of the event will be available on our Facebook page soon.
We are incredibly grateful to have such strong support for our organisation.
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The Prison Legal Education and Assistance Project provides legal education seminars to a wide range of inmates. Please explore our website for more information on the PLEA Project.