2015/16 Annual Report
The Young Lawyers Committee is representative of practitioners with less than five years’ post admission experience or less than 35 years of age, whichever is the later. This demographic encompasses a large proportion of the profession. The Committee includes practitioners from big, small and midsized firms, as well as government lawyers from offices in the CBD, suburban and regional locations.
The Committee hosts and assists the Law Society in coordinating a significant number of events and initiatives through each calendar year. A number of these are annual occurrences, including:
- inter-firm sporting events (Volleyball and Netball);
- the advocacy programme, which includes preparatory seminars as well as the practical weekend of coaching sessions;
- awareness raising about social justice issues through public debates including Law Week panel discussion and fundraising for the Chief Justice’s Law Week Youth Appeal;
- wellbeing initiatives including a Geoffrey Robertson QC – style mental health hypothetical;
- small firm networking evenings; and
- the Law Student Mentoring Programme.
In 2015/16, the Committee renewed its focus on giving young members of the legal profession the ability to develop longstanding networks among their peers and members of other peak industry bodies. This included a number of new initiatives such as
- the introduction of the Inter Profession Networking seminars which combines young lawyers, accountants and other young professionals and gives them an opportunity to learn important soft skills, the series comprised of two seminars at EY and will be expanding in 2016/17;
- the inaugural YLC Assembly, which was a forum held at the Law Society and open to all young lawyers with the intent on having an open discussion of issues facing young legal professionals; and
- for the first time, the Committee also opened its doors to any Law Society members (who fall under the young lawyers definition) to attend its monthly meetings.
In addition to these new initiatives the Committee also:
- completed submissions relating to the expunging of homosexual criminal convictions;
- continued to arrange monthly case notes and provide various articles for Brief journal;
- continued to considering the Australian Young Lawyers Report in to workplace standards; and
- continued to connect with the Tristan Jepson Memorial Foundation, the five West Australian Law Student Faculty Societies and the Australian Young Lawyers Committee.