Marrickville Legal Centre is a not-for-profit community legal centre based in Sydney’s inner-west but working across NSW.
We provide holistic support to people experiencing disadvantage in our legal system through free legal and related services. We advocate for equal access to justice and the protection of human rights, and we work to improve our local communities.
For all people
Justice isn’t the privilege of a few. It’s the right of many. We’re proud to stand alongside individuals who are overlooked in our justice system, and provide access to the services they need.
Positive change takes action. We work with our industry partners to make sure the voices of disadvantaged people are heard in the processes that lead to policy reform.
For working together
We work with our clients to help them take action towards a better future. We are proud to bring people together to promote justice and protect human rights
For lasting change
We aim to resolve any immediate legal issues, but also to link our clients to resources and services that will support them towards positive and lasting change in their lives, and in our community.
Marrickville Legal Centre offers free legal advice and assistance to the community of the inner-west, south-west, southern suburbs of Sydney, and beyond. There are 1.5 million people living in our key catchment: that’s 30 percent of Sydney’s total population.
Justice is for all people, not just for a few. We recognise that some members of the community experience greater barriers to access to justice than others. We prioritise service delivery to:
Young people, people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, people with a mental illness, people with a disability,
Young people, people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, people with a mental illness, people with a disability, people who have experienced family violence, Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander people, people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, and the LGBTIQ community.
More than forty years ago, in 1979, a group of law students identified a gap in the provision of legal services in the inner west of Sydney. Together they established a free legal advice service in a small office in Marrickville Town Hall. The service was staffed on a voluntary basis and specifically targeted the local migrant community. The community response was overwhelming and so marked the creation of NSW’s second community legal centre, two years after Redfern Legal Centre.
The NSW Legal Services Commission provided funding in 1980 for a pilot Children’s Legal Service, paving the way for our present-day Youth Legal Service. By 1984 the Centre employed four part-time solicitors and opened three nights per week. Our team extended to 50 student volunteers, 35 solicitor volunteers and a handful of Greek and Vietnamese interpreters.
From houses on Marrickville Road and on Robert Street, the Centre finally moved, in 1994, to its current premises on Illawarra Road. The Inner West Tenants’ Advice & Advocacy Service was founded the following year. After 10 years of operating the successful Inner West Domestic Violence Court Assistance Scheme, MLC also established in 2009 what is now known as the Domestic Violence Support Service.
Today, Marrickville Legal Centre has grown its reach to extend legal and related services to residents of the inner-west, south-west, southern and northern Sydney, and state-wide.. Our holistic approach has not wavered and continues to pair direct legal guidance with a broader range of social services, which enables people to move forward into a secure future. As part of this approach, we venture to drive policy advocacy in our state’s legal system as we continue to instigate meaningful social change.
Help us celebrate our 40th anniversary in 2019.
Marrickville Legal Centre is extremely grateful for the assistance and partnership of the following firms, each of whom offers indispensable support in connection with our key legal services.
Graham Jenkins (Chair)
MANAGING PRINCIPAL SOLICITOR
GENERAL LEGAL SERVICE
FAMILY LAW SERVICE
FAMILY VIOLENCE SERVICE
YOUTH LEGAL SERVICE
NSW STRATA COLLECTIVE SALES ADVOCACY SERVICE
INNER WEST TENANTS ADVICE AND ADVOCACY SERVICE (IWTAAS)
NORTHERN SYDNEY AREA TENANTS’ SERVICE (NSATS)
Chris Anderson (Acting)
FUNDRAISING & COMMUNICATIONS