Law for Community Workers

If you wish you understood more about the law, if your clients have legal problems, if you wish you knew where and how to refer them for help, this training may be for you.

This training has a very practical focus, aiming to develop skills in identifying legal problems, giving legal information and assisting people to understand legal procedures.

It is aimed at community workers or staff in agencies involved in direct client contact.

Students need to be able to deal with legal terminology, be interested in legal issues and social justice, have good IT skills (or be willing and able to pick them up), and regular access to the internet and email.  People working in Aboriginal services, with new migrants, with people with a disability, with young people or working with any disadvantaged group are particularly encouraged to apply.

The Training - In Brief
Topics Covered
Law Handbook
Venues
Fees
Enrolments
Frequently Asked Questions

 

THE TRAINING – IN BRIEF
 

The training covers the content of two units of study approved by the Community Services and Health Industry Skills Council:

  • CHCADV001 Facilitate the interests and rights of clients
  • CHCLEG002 Interpret and use legal information

Students need to attend weekly two hour classes over one semester, undertake reading and learning activities each week as well as assessments. 

Students who successfully complete the training will have the above units added to their Academic Record at TAFE SA. These two units of study may also be used as electives in TAFE SA’s Certificate IV in Legal Services.  If you wish to continue on to complete the Certificate IV, you may need to apply for entry through SATAC after completing these two units.

TOPICS COVERED

Topics covered include

  • Introduction to the Austrailan Legal System (such as separation of powers, court system, sources of law and using legal resources)
  • Introduction to Legal Assistance (such as giving legal information, making referrals for legal advice, assistance and representation and applying for legal aid)
  • Personal Decision-Making (such as advance directives, guardianship and consent to medical treatment)
  • Housing Law (such as tenancies and neighbourhood disputes)
  • Employment Law
  • Consumer Law
  • Credit and Debt Law
  • Family Violence (such as intervention orders and offences) and Child Protection
  • Family Law (such as children's matters, child support, separation, divorce and property division)
  • Social Security Law (such as welfare rights and appeals)
  • Criminal Law (such as arrest, bail, court process and sentencing)

All substantive topics will cover sources of law, using legal resources, giving legal information, where to refer for legal advice, assistance and/or representation, where particular types of claims are lodged etc.

LAW HANDBOOK

The text book is the Law Handbook. This is published by the Legal Services Commissions and is available free online at www.lawhandbook.sa.gov.au. Computers with internet access are available for use at TAFE SA sites and most public libraries on a free or low cost basis.

VENUES

The class is held at the Adelaide campus of TAFE SA.

Regional and remote students may be able to attend via TAFE SA’s video conferencing sites located across the state (for example, at Berri, Ceduna, Elizabeth, Ernabella, Gawler, Gilles Plains, Kadina, Mount Barker, Mount Gambier, Murray Bridge, Noarlunga, Port Augusta, Port Pirie, Port Lincoln, Victor Harbor and Whyalla).

If this will be relevant to you then it is essential that you return an Expression of Interest Application Form as early as possible. This will ensure that the site can be booked in time for your commencement.

It may also be possible for students to attend through other videoconferencing technologies (but students would need a webcam, microphone, headphones and suitable PC and broadband internet connection). This would need to be further discussed with the Course Coordinator.

FEES

$493.50 (as at 1 July 2015)

No training subsidies or concession rate is available.

ENROLMENTS

Download an Expression of Interest Application Form and send it by email with subject line
"Expression of Interest" to lcw@lsc.sa.gov.au.

We will confirm receipt of your application and forward it to TAFE SA for enrolment purposes. 

If you have any queries about the course, please contact the Course Coordinator by email to lcw@lsc.sa.gov.au.

Once you are enrolled, an invoice will be sent to you requiring payment to TAFE SA. Payment can be made by credit card, online and/or by taking your printed invoice to an Australian Post Office branch.

 FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
 

Who can apply?

The training is aimed at caseworkers and other staff involved in direct client contact. If you do not fit into this target group, you are encouraged to discuss your interest and suitability for the training with the course coordinator prior to enrolment.

What qualification will I get?

On successful completion of the training, the Legal Services Commission will issue you with a Certificate of Completion.  Your TafeSA academic transcript will be credited with the following two units of competency:

  • CHCLEG002 Interpret and use legal information
  • CHCADV001 Facilitate the interests and rights of clients

These units of competency can be credited as electives towards qualifications such as the Certificate IV Legal Services and other certificate courses within the Community Services training package, subject to approval by TafeSA.

How will it help me in my work?

This training will help you gain an understanding of the legal system, how to identify common legal problems your vulnerable clients may be experiencing, locate relevant information, and how to refer your clients to relevant legal and dispute resolution services.  

What texts are required?

You will have access to the learning materials on TafeSA’s Moodle platform. To create an account, you will require access to the internet and an email address.  Principal reading will be from the Law Handbook, which is produced by the Legal Services Commission and located free of charge at www.lawhandbook.sa.gov.au. There will be readings set out each week.

What is the assessment?

Assessment will include a discussion forum, three simulated case studies, as well as some short answer quizzes. There is no exam.

What level of English proficiency is required?

It is essential that students can read and write in English to a level equivalent of Certificate III.

How much does the course cost?

The fee is $493.50 (full fee paying).

Are there any fee subsidies available?

WorkReady funding is not available. You may like to consider approaching your employer for sponsorship. If you would like the invoice issued in the name of your employer, your employer will need to complete a third party payment form. Please contact TafeSA Justice and Policing Studies.

Can I study online?

The course is designed to be delivered face to face and through videoconferencing. We have found that students get the most out of a live and interactive classroom, complemented by online learning materials.

Can I attend via videoconference at my local TAFE campus?

TAFE campuses currently booked for semester 2, 2016 include Mount Gambier, Victor Harbor, Noarlunga, Murray Bridge, Berri, Elizabeth, Kadina, Port Pirie, Port Augusta, Whyalla, Port Lincoln and Ceduna. If you would like to attend at another campus, please contact the Course Coordinator for availability.

When are classes held?

Classes are held each Thursday from 10am to 12pm.

Semester 1, 2016 classes commenced on Thursday 11 February and will conclude on 19 May. No classes are held during the term break from 15 April to 2 May.

Semester 2, 2016 classes will commence on Thursday 28 July and conclude on 3 November. No classes are hled during the term break from 30 September to 17 October.

A tentative timetable of classes for semester 2, 2016 is available here.

What if I can’t attend every class?

If you miss a week you can catch up with an audio recording of each class.

 

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