Productivity Commission - Access to Justice Submission


This submission to the Productivity Commission responds to their Draft Report on Access to Justice Arrangements.

The submission endorses NACLC’s submission and additionally focuses on three key principles necessary for breaking down systemic disadvantage and discrimination against women to ensure equal access to justice for Australian women:

  • Increased funding for legal assistance service providers assisting women;
  • Reforming policies and laws that hinder access to justice for women and perpetuate gender inequality; and
  • Better recognition of women’s systemic disadvantage and their legal needs in the provision of legal aid

The submission:

  • Outlines the barriers women face in accessing justice because of their gender and how this intersect with barriers created due to other vulnerabilities.
  • Highlights the importance and the need to continue funding and increase funding for women’s specialist legal services
  • Provides an overview of the work women’s legal services undertake
  • Addresses some of the misunderstanding or generalisations within the draft report in relation to legal assistance service providers
  • Highlights the importance and necessity for CLCs to be funded to undertake policy and law reform
  • Provides examples of some particular areas of law which women struggle to access justice
  • Advocates for better recognition of the systemic disadvantages experienced by women in navigating a justice system that is inherently gender-biased; the legal needs of women to be better identified and prioritised in the granting of legal aid and funding of women’s legal services
  • Provides case studies to assist us in conveying our arguments; and
  • Provides some suggestions in relation to the collection of data

Download Resources


Below is a list of supporting documents for this submission.

DescriptionDownload file
WLSA Productivity Commission submission http://www.wlsa.org.au/uploads/submission-resources/__name/WLSA_PC_Sub_May_2014.pdf (http://www.wlsa.org.au/uploads/submission-resources/__size/WLSA_PC_Sub_May_2014.pdf, http://www.wlsa.org.au/uploads/submission-resources/__extension/WLSA_PC_Sub_May_2014.pdf)