Aboriginal Access Program

Kingsford Legal Centre’s (KLC) Aboriginal Access Program (AAP) aims to ensure that we provide strong, culturally appropriate services to the Aboriginal communities of our local area.

Kingsford Legal Centre has established an Aboriginal Advisory Group that includes members of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community who have a special interest in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice. The group provides guidance on the program’s direction.

    Aboriginal Access Worker

    Kingsford Legal Centre’s Aboriginal Access Worker strives to create and maintain productive, respectful, working partnerships with the local Aboriginal communities by providing avenues of legal support and access to local community groups and individuals.  KLC is very excited to announce that Vanessa Turnbull-Roberts has started as our new Aboriginal Access Worker.  Vanessa works Mondays and Thursdays.

    Jingiwalla, my name is Vanessa Turnbull-Roberts, I write this on the lands of the Bedigal people. I acknowledge our elders, children, and all First Nations people here. I extend this to all those working in different practices to provide advocacy and support for First Nations members in the community.

    I am a proud Bundjalung woman and have recently been appointed the new role at Kingsford Legal Centre as the Aboriginal Access Worker, legal education. My family come from sacred rivers, mountains, fresh water, and salt water of the Bundjalung nation located in Cabbage Tree Island and Lismore. We are naturally fighters in our Roberts family both a combination for freedom and the physical boxing type of fighters. My Pop Alby Roberts (also known as poison) was a professional fighter who fought his way all the way down to the known place of resistance, Gadigal country - Redfern, which I also call home. My pop was also one of the First few Indigenous people to be given an exemption certificate by the white protection board to fight internationally.  My mother is a beautiful Irish woman who grew by the ocean, loving to surf and feel grounded by water, mum met dad in Redfern.

    I am currently working towards the final stages of completing my combined Law and Social work degree at UNSW.  I undertook this degree due to my very own community and self being subjected to the disproportionate impact of the law and hope to navigate this space to supporting members in our community. I come from a very strong blood line of strength, resilience, healing, and love, this stems from our sacred history. My love lays in the stories we hold to share, the future of our generations, and strength we carry embedded deeply in our bloodlines. 

    I am extremely passionate about supporting community and ensuring that First Nations people and those from marginalised backgrounds have their voices heard at the centre of legal discourse and decision making when it comes to our wellbeing and community. In particular, the injustices faced by First Nations people here in Australia is a national shame, which requires urgent responses to accountability.

    I take pride in the collective activism we share as First Nations people and continue to dedicate this into my everyday practice, ensuring the rights and wellbeing of children and young people are supported. I recently published Trauma then and now: Implications of adoption reform for First Nations children which discusses the implications of statutory Out of Home Care for  children and young people subjected to child protection.

    I am excited to work in this role, as it allows for me to utilise both my personal and professional strengths to supporting community having access to fair and equitable legal advice and support which KLC hope to achieve when working with community. When it comes to our communities, having First Nation representation allows for a sense of safety and belonging.

    I really look forward to listening deeper to community, and working collectively to ensure legal access, advice, education, and support is provided.  I look forward to meeting you.

     

    KLC AAW

     

    Some of the services provided by our Aboriginal Access Worker include:

    Support person

    Kingsford Legal Centre’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander clients can choose to have KLC’s Aboriginal Access Worker present and assist them to use our services.

    Community legal education programs

    Kingsford Legal Centre’s Aboriginal Access Worker designs and runs community workshops addressing specific legal issues and needs affecting the local community.

    Law and policy reform

    Kingsford Legal Centre’s Aboriginal Access Worker engages with law and policy reform in the area of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander social justice.

    Educational seminars for UNSW KLC students

    As a part of KLC's clinical legal training university course, UNSW Law & Justice students have a unique opportunity to connect and work with the local Aboriginal community. Students are encouraged to become particularly involved with the work of KLC’s AAP.

    KLC Aboriginal Service Provision Manual

    Kingsford Legal Centre’s three Aboriginal Access Workers, in consultation with KLC’s Aboriginal Advisory Group, developed KLC’s Aboriginal Service Provision Manual to help staff, students and volunteers of the Centre to build strong, culturally appropriate relationships with Aboriginal clients and communities.

    Download KLC's Aboriginal Service Provision Manual

    Kingsford Legal Centre acknowledges the Gadigal and Bidjigal Clans, who traditionally occupied the Sydney Coast.
    We respect those Elders, past and present, and thank them for allowing us to work and study on their lands

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