Human Rights Solicitor – Queensland Advocacy for Inclusion (QAI)

Published on July 10, 2024

Applications close 29 July

Under the supervision and direction of the Principal Solicitor and other Senior QAI Staff as required, the Solicitor will provide referrals, legal advice, casework and representation within the scope of QAI’s Human Rights Advocacy Practice. The Solicitor’s role will include representation before the Mental Health Review Tribunal (MHRT) and Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) and advice to clients on mental health, guardianship, administration, human rights law and discrimination matters. The Solicitor will contribute to the systemic advocacy work and community legal education of QAI within the Human Rights Advocacy Practice.

The position could be either part time or full time commencing in August 2024. The role falls under the Social, Community, Home Care & Disability Services Industry Award 2010 (SCHDS Award) and will be paid at Level 5.

Remuneration: $49 – $52 per hour

Key Responsibilities

Duties include, but are not limited to:

  • Provide legal advice to clients of QAI’s Human Rights Advocacy Practice (HRAP) for matters arising under the Mental Health Act 2016 (Qld)the Forensic Disability Act 2011 (Qld), the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld), Disability Services Act 2006 (Qld), the Guardianship and Administration Act 2000 (Qld), the Anti-Discrimination Act 1991 (Qld), the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth) and related legislation and policies, via face to face, phone or video appointments.
  • Perform legal representation on behalf of HRAP clients with matters before the MHRT, either in person or via video link as required and in accordance with the MHRT practice directions.
  • Perform legal representation on behalf of HRAP clients with matters before QCAT, as well as the Queensland Human Rights Commission (QHRC) and the Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) and other courts and tribunals as required.
  • Provide information and referrals to other legal, welfare and community services, including the provision of community legal education events and material.
  • Perform various tasks including maintaining client databases (CLASS), QAI’s electronic filing systems, Microsoft 365 and its integrated apps and perform work including drafting legal correspondence, advice letters and preparing legal documents.
  • Identify issues requiring systemic reform (including law reform) in relation to the rights of people with disability, in collaboration with systems advocates.
  • Conduct strategic test cases as directed from a human-rights perspective to achieve or promote systemic reform of laws and services impacting on people with disability.
  • Keep informed of current government and community attitudes and policies and their effects on the lives of people with disability.
  • Assist with the preparation of submissions, brochures, discussion papers, reports, self-help kits, newsletter contributions and other publications within the expertise and responsibilities of the position.

Selection Criteria

Essential

  • strong commitment to human rights, social justice and diversity
  • experienced, unrestricted lawyer with at least two years’ experience in legal practice in Queensland, or extensive management experience
  • experience in Criminal Law or Mental Health Law and/or other relevant practice area with demonstrated experience in the disability, mental health or social services sectors, delivering advice and representation to vulnerable individuals
  • highly developed interpersonal skills, specifically the ability to converse with people at grass roots, as well as those in positions of authority to affect change in the lives of people with disability
  • criminal history screening clearance.

Desirable

  • lived experience of disability
  • previous experience at a Community Legal Centre and/or with the Community Legal Assistance Services System (CLASS), would be advantageous.