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With You is a training program for trauma-informed, rights-based legal services to people experiencing distress, poor mental health and/or suicidality.

With You training has been developed through a review of domestic and international literature; analysis of existing best practice in the legal assistance sector; and national consultations with 534 people across Australia.

With You training is available offered to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Services, Community Legal Centres, Family Violence Prevention Legal Services, and Legal Aid Commissions.

Co-Design in the National Legal Assistance Sector

With You is designing training in partnership with people receiving and delivering legal assistance services. It is the first national co-design project in the legal assistance sector.

A total of 463 individuals participated in focus groups or interviews and 71 responses were received through an online survey. This included 195 lawyers, 98 clients with lived experience; 23 carers, families, supporters and kin; and mental health professionals.

Training has been informed by all parts of the legal assistance sector. Consultations included Legal Aid Commissions, Community Legal Centres, Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander Legal Services and Family Violence Prevention Legal Services. With You consulted with lawyers, support staff and allied professionals in crime, civil and family jurisdictions. Members of the judiciary and Mental Health Review Tribunals shared their perspectives.

Consultations spanned all states and territories and included both metropolitan and regional areas. The perspectives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander, Culturally and Linguistically Diverse, LGBTIQ+ and young people were reflected. Critically, the perspectives of hard-to-reach groups, such as people with lived experience of the criminal justice system and compulsory mental health system, were included.

Trauma Informed Organisational Toolkit

The With You Trauma-Informed Organisational Toolkit provides practical guidance from the legal assistance sector, for the sector, on all aspects of service design, organisational culture, leadership and management. The Toolkit showcases best practice from approximately 40 legal services across Australia, addressing:

  1.  Organisational readiness
  2.  Staff competency and trauma-informed supervision
  3.  Integrated practice and partnerships
  4.  Client and carer access, involvement and leadership
  5.  Organisational and systems change

The project is funded by the Commonwealth Attorney-General’s Department and led by Legal Aid NSW, on behalf of National Legal Aid.


For any queries, please feel free to contact the team.

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