Law Week 2021 seeking to educate, celebrate and engage

NATIONAL INITIATIVE: Law Week seeks to promote knowledge, understanding and community awareness about law and the legal system. Photo: Shutterstock
NATIONAL INITIATIVE: Law Week seeks to promote knowledge, understanding and community awareness about law and the legal system. Photo: Shutterstock

Law Week is a nationwide initiative held annually in May to raise awareness about the law and navigating the legal system.

This year Law Week 2021 is being observed from May 17-23 across Australia, and from state to state, there will be programs and activities.

For most Australians, resorting to a lawyer is a rare and most likely stressful event.

Finding appropriate legal help in these moments is critical to getting justice.

"Law Week seeks to break down barriers by promoting knowledge, understanding and community awareness about legal rights, responsibilities, the law, legal systems, the legal profession and those who enforce the law," Legal Aid NSW community education legal branch manager Jessica McLaren said.

"Ultimately, It's about demystifying the law by empowering people."

As part of NSW Law Week 2021, public libraries around NSW are hosting free workshops focusing on two topics - Your neighbours and the law and Your money and the law.

To be held in over 30 public libraries across the state, the workshops are a collaboration between the State Library of NSW, Legal Aid NSW, Community Legal Centres and NSW Community Justice Centres.

The one-hour sessions will feature a presentation by a Legal Aid NSW solicitor followed by questions and answers.

"Both talks will focus on self-help tools that can help you navigate through Law Access NSW," Jessica said.

Law Access is part of Legal Aid NSW and provides free legal info via online pathways, phone and live chat.

The talks will also promote the Find Legal Answers service, developed by the State Library of NSW and available through all public libraries.

Find Legal Answers is a plain language service that provides the community with up-to-date and reliable legal information to answer common questions about law.

"This important Law Week collaboration brings legal service providers into local libraries to share their expertise and inform the community on legal issues that impact on their everyday lives," State Librarian John Vallance said.

There will also be a range of webinars, podcasts and talks on other legal topics during NSW Law Week 2021 at various participating locations and platforms.

Marrickville Community Legal Centre has created a website to co-ordinate these events.

To find out more, visit lawweeknsw.org.au.

"Local events being held around NSW during National Law Week are an important way to help people learn more about the law, the legal system and how to get answers to common legal questions," Law Society of NSW president Juliana Warner said.

Law Week in Victoria is this year called Victorian Law Week. It is co-ordinated and run by the Victorian Law Foundation, which supports better justice through research, education and grants.

"During Victorian Law Week 2021, discover how the law affects your life, find answers to your legal questions and meet the people who resolve your disputes and enforce our laws," Victoria Law Foundation executive director Lynne Haultain said.

"With more than 100 free events all over Victoria, there is sure to be something to help answer your everyday law questions during Victorian Law Week."

For more information, visit lawweek.net.au/about-law-week/.

Similar Law Week programs and events are being held throughout other states.

In Queensland, for example, community legal service LawRight, which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year, will host the 11th annual Queensland Legal Walk on May 18.

The Queensland Legal Walk unites communities to walk together and raise vital funds to ensure all Queenslanders have access to the legal system.

For further information, contact your state Law Society.

  • Queensland: qls.com.au - 1300 367 757
  • Tasmania: lst.org.au - (03) 6234 4133
  • South Australia: lawsocietysa.asn.au - (08) 8229 0200
  • Western Australia: lawsocietywa.asn.au - (08) 93248600
  • Northern Territory: lawsocietynt.asn.au - (08) 8981 5104
  • ACT: actlawsociety.asn.au - (02) 6274 0300
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