Lander & Rogers and FVPLS Victoria formalise partnership
Our firm and the Aboriginal Family Violence Prevention & Legal Service Victoria (FVPLS Victoria) recently celebrated the launch of a formal partnership between our two organisations.
Pro Bono & Community Support Partner, Joanna Renkin, said, "Recognising over seven years of collaboration with FVPLS Victoria, this formal partnership underpins our firm's commitment to supporting FVPLS Victoria and making a positive impact on the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women.”
"FVPLS Victoria provides vital support to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and their children who are experiencing or at risk of family violence,” explained Antoinette Braybrook, CEO of FVPLS Victoria. “Our organisation provides culturally safe and holistic legal services, as well as early intervention and prevention programs that build resilience and cultural strength to reduce vulnerability to violence.”
Ms Renkin said, “We view our pro bono legal assistance and broader engagement with FVPLS Victoria as a meaningful collaboration with a valued partner. Our partnership recognises our firm's desire to contribute to building sustainable responses to unmet legal need in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community, and particularly to enhance access to justice for women experiencing family violence. We recognise FVPLS Victoria as the expert in the field."
“FVPLS Victoria is one of the only Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations in Victoria which specialises in assisting victims/survivors of family violence. The views we have and positions we hold come from over 15 years of on-the-ground experience working with Aboriginal victims/survivors — predominantly women. Our programs are designed by Aboriginal women for Aboriginal women. We have worked hard to gain the trust and meet the needs of our clients,” said Ms Braybrook.
Lander & Rogers Chief Executive Partner, Andrew Willder, said, "FVPLS Victoria has proven success in tackling the occurrence and underlying causes of family violence against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women. We have been delighted to be able to support the sustainability of FVPLS Victoria in the past and, through this formal acknowledgment of our partnership as a firm, are committed to supporting it into the future to create lasting change for women who experience significant and disproportionate disadvantage in our community."
Ms Braybrook spoke with Lander & Rogers staff about the vital client and policy work carried out by FVPLS (both in Victoria and nationally, through its national network) and the ongoing needs of their clients — one of the most legally disadvantaged groups in Australia.
"Aboriginal women are 34 times more likely to suffer family violence than non-Aboriginal women and 10 times more likely to die at the hands of their partners," she said.
“FVPLS services provide essential legal and non-legal supports to ensure that our women are safe and that they have voice. However, regrettably, our services are substantially under-funded.
“Our partnership with Lander & Rogers makes a substantial contribution to assisting us to provide the services and supports that our clients need. By assisting FVPLS Victoria with our work and supporting the establishment of our Koori Women’s Meeting Place, Lander & Rogers has demonstrated a real commitment to improving access to justice for Aboriginal women.”
L-R: Nick Toonen - General Manager, FVPLS Victoria | Joanna Renkin - Pro Bono & Community Support Partner, Lander & Rogers | Antoinette Braybrook - CEO, FVPLS Victoria | Andrew Willder - Chief Executive Partner, Lander & Rogers