Sexual assault victims can access free legal help to protect their private counselling sessions from becoming public in court proceedings, after Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Yvette D’Ath today officially launched “Counselling Notes Protect”.
The service is run by Legal Aid Queensland in partnership with the Women’s Legal Service and offers free legal advice and representation to support the Sexual Assault Counselling Privilege laws.
The Government has committed $1.588 million over three years to Legal Aid Queensland, in partnership with the Women’s Legal Service, to provide the service.
Under the laws introduced last year, sexual assault victims’ counselling records are protected from being available during a court case unless they or the court give permission for records to be produced. The court’s permission is also needed before a subpoena to access counselling notes can be issued.
A Sexual Assault Counselling Privilege was one of the recommendations of the Not Now, Not Ever report into domestic and family violence.
To access Counselling Notes Protect call 1300 267 762 for Legal Aid Queensland.