On May 16, a crowd of more than 200 strolled our city streets for the 2017 Law Week “Walk for Justice”.
Beginning in 2008, the national event was organised by Justice Connect and the Australian Pro Bono Centre as an annual celebration of Pro Bono Day and Law Week.
Executive director of the Victoria Law Foundation, Joh Kirby told CBD News that the walk was about raising awareness of the pro bono work undertaken in Victoria that people may not be aware of.
“There’s a really extensive pro bono culture both amongst solicitors and the Victorian Bar as well, so the idea was to raise the profile of all the work that’s done,” Ms Kirby said.
According to Ms Kirby, a lot of Victorian law firms have pro bono partners that specifically manage the pro bono work of the firm, or provide staff to community legal centres.
Previously, the walk began at Parliament House and finished at the County Court of Victoria. However this year the 5km walk took a different route, beginning at the County Court and concluding at the Law Week festival hub, Federation Square.
The walk’s $25 registration fee covered the cost of the Walk for Justice t-shirts worn by all participants. All additional funds and donations went towards supporting Justice Connect.
Justice Connect has helped bridge the gap for people and community organisations that cannot afford a lawyer or are ineligible for legal aid for 25 years.