Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

Kept Busy Serving Our Indigenous Community; One Year on the Gold Coast Was Enough, There's No Place like Home

Newspaper article The Chronicle (Toowoomba, Australia)

Kept Busy Serving Our Indigenous Community; One Year on the Gold Coast Was Enough, There's No Place like Home

Article excerpt

Byline: Peter Hardwick peter.hardwick@thechronicle.com.au

BORN and bred in the Garden City, Belinda Essex simply loves life in Toowoomba.

Though she did spend 12 months on the Gold Coast some years ago, Ms Essex soon returned to life up on the Range.

"There's no place like home," she smiled.

A court support officer, also known as field officer, with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service (ATSILS), Ms Essex is kept busy organising clients and attending courts in Toowoomba and across the Darling Downs.

"We liaise with the lawyers and the clients and see that the clients have an understanding of the court process," she explained.

"I've been with ATSILS for 23 years and we've come a long way.

"We started with two criminal lawyers and two field officers.

"Now we have four criminal lawyers, two family/civil lawyers, two field officers and two admin officers here in Toowoomba.

"We also have a permanent field officer in St George and Goodiwindi. …

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