IMG 5193 1600pxThe Vietnamese Lawyer Project

Melbourne’s western suburbs are home to a large Vietnamese-born community.  Within the Brimbank local government area, this community represents about 10% of the population. The Vietnamese community is isolated by language and cultural barriers which prevent many from accessing mainstream legal and other services.

Brimbank Melton Community Legal Centre (BMCLC) (a program of commUnity+) delivers the Vietnamese Lawyer project in partnership with the Australian Vietnamese Women’s Association (AVWA).

This is a two-year pilot project funded by the Department of Justice and Regulation and aims to improve access to justice for the Vietnamese community in the western suburbs by delivering legal services in the Vietnamese language through a bilingual lawyer.  Continue reading...

 

- Brimbank Melton Community Legal Centre

Relief from debt for BMCLC Client

John (name changed) is an asylum seeker from an African country and on a Temporary Protection Visa granted to asylum seekers in Australia. He speaks very little English. This did not hold him back from working casually to make a basic income to support himself. All the savings that he could build up were sent overseas to pay for the medical treatment of his ill mother.

Unfortunately, John got involved in a motor vehicle accident in mid-2016 where he believed he was not at fault. But in their insurance claim, the other driver stated that John had merged into their lane and caused the collision. John was subsequently pursued by the insurer of the other driver for a total of approximately $9,500!

During the course of this file, John also experienced medical issues requiring a knee reconstruction and mental health treatment. Understandably, this was a very tough situation for him, worsened with the constant psychological pressure of having a debt that he couldn’t possibly pay.

He then approached Brimbank Melton Community Legal Centre (BMCLC) for help. Given that no independent witnesses made themselves available at the scene, the lawyer at BMCLC commenced disputing liability on behalf of John and requested that the matter be closed.

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To further demonstrate to the insurer that they should stop pursuing him, the lawyer completed a notice of financial hardship and provided the insurer with a statement of financial position which showed that John’s expenses were greater than his modest income.

Following 6+ months of negotiation, John could take a sigh of relief as the BMCLC lawyer successfully convinced the insurer to close their file and stop pursuing John for the approximate $9,500.

What a great example of the how our team at BMCLC helps the most vulnerable members of our community to access justice.

- Brimbank Melton Community Legal Centre (BMCLC), commUnity+

commUnity+ are compassionate to the needs of our clients who have disabilities and medical issues. They are flexible with their classes and also pride themselves on the quality of their courses and services. Their education team are great with helping our clients and communicating to us.

- Disability Employment Service, Taylors Lakes

We are happy to refer our clients to commUnity+ as we are confident that they will be receiving quality education and outcomes that lead into employment and their future prospects.

- Job Active Provider, St Albans

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commUnity+ collected donations of non-perishable food items (i.e. soup, beans canned meals, canned vegetables, tuna, cereal, pasta, rice, legumes etc.) to support the Anti-Poverty Week from 16 to 22 October 2016. These items were passed on to the Tin Shed to be distributed to families in need within the City of Brimbank. 

A letter of Appreciation from the Tin Shed.

Thankyou letter from Tin Shed

- Anti-Poverty Week Donations to the Tin Shed