Huge return seen from Community Law investment

Money spent on Community Law at least triples in value to the community, study finds

Huge return seen from Community Law investment
Community Law Centres o Aotearoa (CLCA) is giving so much more back to the community compared to the money invested in the organisation, a new study has found.

According to “The value of investing in Community Law Centres: An economic investigation” study conducted by the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research, Community Law is providing services valued at $30m to $50m to the country’s communities.

That is despite a relatively small investment of just $11m a year. What is more, the figure does not include the more than 16,000 hours of information and education services that the organisation provides each year.

The study said that for the 2015-2016 year, Community Law Centres provided more than 100,000 hours of advice, assistance, or representation to at least 48,000 clients who faced more than 53,000 matters.

“Community Law is not only giving New Zealand’s most powerless access to free legal advice, but by addressing and stopping legal problems from escalating, it is ultimately reducing the number of people relying on social services and the associated costs for taxpayers,” Cameron Madgwick, CLCA joint chair, told the Law Society.

“There is no doubt about the financial and societal value Community Law is delivering and the potential for us to be doing so much more,” he said.

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