At Gilbert + Tobin, the idea of equal access to justice is stitched into the fabric of the firm. Guided by a dedicated pro bono team, our lawyers provide legal representation and advice to a range of marginalised communities and organisations. In 2014-15, the firm completed more than 17,477 hours of pro bono work at an average of 64 hours per lawyer; almost twice the National Pro Bono Aspirational Target.
Our pro bono practice was pioneered in 1996, when Gilbert + Tobin hired the first full-time in-house pro bono lawyer in Australia. Over 20 years, our team has grown significantly in order to properly serve different types of communities, and continue to grow our reach. Unlike most commercial law firms, we have two full-time pro bono partners, Michelle Hannon and Anne Creagan, who work alongside three full-time lawyers.
We are particularly focussed on helping Indigenous communities, people with disabilities and refugees, to address the problems that impact on their day-to-day lives. These often include discrimination matters, employment entitlements, unacceptable housing conditions and refugee applications. Every week, we provide advice at local organisations like the Marrickville Legal Centre, Matthew Talbot Homeless Shelter and the Asylum Seeker Centre. Our team also travels across the country – from Moree to The Kimberley, and many towns in between – in order to provide personal, face-to-face legal services.
Some of our lawyers recently had the pleasure of visiting Lirrwi in North East Arnhem Land. Please click through to view the video about their experience.