Amy is a senior solicitor at the State Solicitors Office. She is also about to embark on a PHD in Legal Philosophy! 

AMy Says "I joined WLWA Committee to connect with and learn from other inspiring women, who each offer a different experience of law, the practice of law, and its impact on clients and community and to education and advocacy concerning the way that law affects women in the broader community". 

As Chair of the Social Justice and Law Reform Working Group, Amy is responsible for developing the policy priorities and positions for the WLWA Committee, advocating on behalf of that position (e.g. through the formulation of submissions), and contributing to WLWA publications. Amy works closely with the other members of her working group, Rachel Lee (Herbert Smith Freehills); Dianne Caruso (Kim Wilson & Co); Haley Graydon (DLA Piper).

  • So far this year, the SJLR Working Group has prepared submissions, on behalf of WLWA to:
  • the Legal Costs Committee in relation to amendments to costs in family provision matters; and
  • the Australian Law Reform Commission in response to the issues paper on the review of the family law system.

With a view to developing policy, the SJLR Working Group (in discussions with those most affected) has also been working on:

  • research to identify access to justice issues, particularly in relation to legal services to victims of family and domestic violence; and
  • possible measures to support equitable briefing.

The SJLR Working Group is currently working on, on an ongoing basis how to:

  • improve coordination with other key organisations and institutions within the profession to both make effective use of limited capacity and resources, while also recognising and affirming the unique and specific objects and perspectives of each institutions/organisation;
  • better understand how structures and practices that exist within the profession work, how they impact practitioners and how changes to structures could contribute to the outcomes that WLWA seeks to achieve;
  • improve outreach to members, women lawyers and women law students, particularly in relation to matters with which the SJLR Working Group is concerned.

To these ends, at the moment the SJLR Working Group is planning a number of events to facilitate discussion about systems and practices around choosing and briefing barristers, and to identify deficiencies in legal service availability and delivery.

Did you know Amy's double barrel surname is only possible due to a legislative amendment the year she was born?  Because her parents were not married, the law at the time required that she have my father's surname. In 1985, the Registration of Births, Deaths and Marriages Act 1961 was amended to give parents a choice of using the surname of either parent or a combined form of the surnames of both parents (with or without a hyphen). The debates on the Registration of Births, Deaths and Marriages Amendment Act 1985 are a fascinating read, and reveal that these amendments were adopted in an attempt to "provide sensitive legislation and standards for the community to live by" and were, at least in part, prompted by advocacy on behalf of women in the community who were experiencing "a strong sense of frustration and agitation with the law" as it then existed.

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