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Aboriginal Legal Service of Western Australia

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Areas of expertise & Fields of activity:

Economic and Social:
  • Criminal Justice
  • Human Rights
  • Indigenous Peoples
  • Justice
  • Social Development

  • Social Development:
  • Indigenous issues
  • Geographic scope: Local
    Country of activity:
  • Australia
  • Mission statement:
    Year established:
    Year of registration: 2000
    Organizational structure: ALSWA is incorporated under the Associations Incorporation Act 1987 (WA) and is governed according to a Constitution. Its members, who are Aboriginal peoples, constitute ALSWA. Staff members who are eligible are encouraged to become members of ALSWA. Members may participate in the Annual General Meeting of ALSWA and other meetings. The Executive Committee is the supreme governing body of ALSWA. It is elected by members and consists of two representatives from each of the eight regions in Western Australia. Staff members are not eligible for election, but the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and the Director of Legal Services (DLS) are ex-officio members of the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee elects the President who chairs meetings and represents the Committee. The Executive Committee sets the policies of ALSWA and appoints the CEO and DLS. There are four members of senior management, which comprise the Senior Management Committee. The CEO is the senior manager of ALSWA and is responsible for the management of the organisation. All staff members are responsible to the CEO and the CEO is responsible to the Executive Committee. The CEO is the chief spokesperson for ALSWA, and represents the organisation to government, the Aboriginal and wider communities. The Executive Officer (EO) assists the CEO and has particular responsibility for financial control and reporting, oversees administrative and support services and training. The EO deputises in many matters for the CEO and is acting CEO in the absence of the CEO. The EO also represents ALSWA to government, the Aboriginal and wider communities. The Director of Legal Services (DLS) conducts the legal practice, and has particular responsibility for all legal practitioners and Court Officers. The DLE also administers all briefing and advises Senior Management and the Executive Committee in legal matters such as assistance policies and law reform. The DLS also represents ALSWA to government, the Aboriginal and wider communities and the legal profession in legal matters. The Practice Manager assists the DLS. The Senior Management Committee considers matters of management significance, and will set policies and procedures. The Committee may require the advice of other staff from time to time, and senior managers may defer particular decisions to that Committee. All staff members are notified of whom they are directly responsible to in their duty statement. Line managers are responsible to Senior Management, and matters to be raised with Senior Management are to be first raised with the direct line managers.
    Number and type of members: There are presently 4903 members of ALSWA, subject to an upcoming review of deceased members. All members reside in Australia and are Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
    Affiliation with NGO networks: IPO Network of Australia, and other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Services in Australia
    Funding structure:
  • Donations and grants from domestic sources
  • Funding structure other: ALSWA receives funding from the federal government
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