6 March 2019
ALS REAFFIRMS DECISION ON NEW SERVICE DELIVERY MODEL IN NORTHERN REGION
The Board of the Aboriginal Legal Service (NSW/ACT) has reaffirmed its decision to relocate the office from Grafton to Coffs Harbour in order to meet growing demands for its culturally-appropriate legal and support services for Aboriginal people across the Northern Region of NSW.
As a sign of the genuine nature of the consultation and its influence on the process to date, the ALS has also changed the date by which the relocation will occur. The relocation was due to take effect from 31 March 2019, and will now be complete by 30 June 2019, with no reduction in the existing staff numbers.
“Contrary to some incorrect local media reports, the relocation of the Grafton office to Coffs Harbour has been reaffirmed by the Board. The decision has been made in the best interests of the ALS and our
Aboriginal clients in the Northern Region,” the Chairperson of the ALS, Bunja Smith, said today.
“Strategically, the ALS must have a presence in areas like Coffs Harbour where there is high demand for our legal and support services.
“The opening of an office in Coffs Harbour will not affect the current service delivery in the Clarence Valley area and the ALS will continue to provide our culturally-appropriate legal and support services to our mob
in the Clarence Valley area.
“As part of the new service delivery model, the ALS will have an outreach location in Grafton which will be utilised for contact and meetings for staff, clients and the wider community.
“The decision to establish a new office in Coffs Harbour is evidence-based and follows a comprehensive review of localised need, demand, capacity and resources in the Coffs Harbour, Grafton and Maclean areas.
“The Board is confident that this decision will result in a stronger, more efficient and improved service delivery model for Aboriginal communities in the Northern Region.”
Chairperson Smith said the ALS is working with staff through the transition process and will update clients and the wider community