The Centre for Innovative Justice’s partnership with the Mental Health Legal Centre has continued to strengthen with the establishment of the multidisciplinary practice (MPD) in 2016.
Multidisciplinary practice happens when different professions with specialised skills and expertise work together to provide an enhanced service to clients.
In the case of the Mental Health Legal Centre, the MDP involves qualified lawyers and a social worker together with law and social work students working collaboratively to support the clients of the Mental Health Legal Centre with integrated social work and legal assistance. The assistance provided by the MDP is available to anyone with mental health concerns that are exacerbated by, or causing legal problems.
The Centre for Innovative Justice and the Mental Health Legal Centre plan to incorporate a range of additional disciplines to expand the support and wrap around services able to be provided to clients with complex needs through the MDP.
The MDP supports a range of crucial functions of the Mental Health Legal Centre, including the state-wide night telephone legal advice service; representation for clients before Mental Health Tribunal hearings; and the Inside Access prison support program, a state-wide program which provides face-to-face and telephone legal advice to prisoners experiencing mental health issues in relation to civil justice problems. Inside Access is particularly involved in the women’s prison, Dame Phyllis Frost Centre, where lawyers, law students, social worker and social work students deliver a weekly face-to-face clinic to women prisoners.