Siti's Story

Siti’s Story

Siti migrated to Australia with her husband and children in 2009. She and her children were victims of domestic violence by her husband, and the children were removed from the parents’ care as a result. Siti needed a blue card to complete the placement component of her studies in education, and to apply for related jobs. Blue Card Services issued a negative notice based on their concerns about her interactions with Child Safety and her criminal history, which included a charge for assault occasioning bodily harm due to physically disciplining her child in 2014. LawRight helped Siti apply to reverse Blue Card Services’s decision and pro bono lawyers supported Siti to represent herself at the final hearing. QCAT set aside the decision to issue a negative notice, and when Siti applied to Blue Card again, she was issued with a positive notice. Siti said LawRight helped her in many more ways than just getting a blue card – she said she is now more confident, that the process helped her learn about herself and that she can now competently use a computer.

“Please forward my thanks and gratitude to the last [volunteer lawyer]. He really motivated me and his explanation was so clear and easy to follow when he was explaining to me on how to draft My Outline of Argument because at that time my mind is too condensed to receive further new information. He make it easy for me to understand by breaking it down the context.”

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Jacqui's Story

Jacqui’s Story

Jacqui is a university social work student who is rebuilding her life, despite many challenges. Her parents severely abused her as a child and in a common manifestaion of trauma, later partnered with a violent abuser. During that relationship she committed property crimes and was imprisoned. Following her release, Jacqui began to rebuild her life by seeing a counsellor to deal with PTSD and depression and enrolling at university. To complete the practical placement for her degree, she required a Blue Card (working with children check).

When Blue Card Services (BCS) rejected Jacqui’s application due to her past criminal history, pro bono volunteers with our QCAT service helped Jacqui apply for review of BCS’ decision. A LawRight member firm and barrister provided ongoing representation to help Jacqui prepare evidence and participate in a compulsory conference. BCS was ordered to reconsider its decision but decided to maintain its refusal. However, six days before the final QCAT hearing, BCS again reconsidered its decision and this time, issued Jacqui with a Blue Card.

This seems a good outcome, but it was 1,007 days from when Jacqui applied for a Blue Card to when she was issued with one – a process that takes most people just a few months. LawRight considers there are structural and individual inequalities in both the extent of these delays and the reasons Blue Card provides for making their decisions.

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Gigi's Story

Gigi’s Story

Queensland and Administrative Tribunal Services

Gigi’s violent ex-partner brought proceedings against her in QCAT for a $20,000 debt. Gigi didn’t dispute the loan, which she had been repaying, but she didn’t accept the additional interest or the requirement to pay the balance of the loan in full.

Her partner, despite being the alleged perpetrator of the violence, had obtained a DVO against Gigi as a form of control. He constantly threatened to report Gigi for breach of the order, so she couldn’t contact him to resolve the dispute.

Pro bono lawyers at a QCAT service appointment helped Gigi draft a response to the minor debt application and a firm decided to provide on- going representation to Gigi. They negotiated with her partner, arranged mediation, a settlement and a no-interest payment plan.

“I would like to thank you and your team sincerely for your professionalism and help with resolving this. It is truly appreciated.”

– Gigi

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