Building on the foundation of previous years, Law week 2016 was a resounding success, with record numbers of Victorians attending over 100 events throughout metro and regional Victoria.
This year's program continued to challenge people's perceptions of the law with a range of events, from mock trials and panel discussions to workshops, tours, exhibitions, music performances, and even a flash mob!
Victoria Law Foundation staff attended many of the events and were pleased with the overwhelmingly positive feedback about the quality of the events and experience of those attending.
Many events sold out in the lead-up to Law Week, proving the high demand for information on the topics covered. The variety of topics included wills and powers of attorney, fines, family law seminars, keeping women out of prison, aging and the law for seniors, law and cancer, copyright, contract and craft and many more that were rich in content for all attendees. There were also a number of pop-up legal health checks delivered by community legal centres across metro and regional Victoria. These allowed Victorians to assess their legal situation in a non-intimidating environment – again breaking down the barriers of the law and our legal system.
Courts Open Day was also a great success, with significant attendance at the Supreme Court, County Court, Magistrates’ Court and VCAT. The Federal Court joined Courts Open Day for the first time this year, which was also warmly received. The huge breadth in audience included young families, students and seniors – with everyone impressed by the numerous tours, mock hearings, information sessions and exhibitions. The Judges' Charity BBQ at the County Court was again a highlight, with many stopping for lunch and the chance to donate to a good cause.
The Festival Hub at Fed Square had a pivotal role in communicating to the public what was on during Law Week around the City of Melbourne and was also a sounding board for those requiring a starting point for specific legal issues. Event partners and sponsors attended the hub to offer information regarding their events and expertise. And a range of publications from Victoria Law Foundation were also available, helping to make the law easier for the community.
The festival was well supported by the media, with multiple features on the radio, digitally and in print. The banners around the city and Law Week hub at Fed Square also played critical roles in generating interest from the public.
A big thank you to our sponsors, event partners and fantastic team, without which this important festival would not be possible. We look forward to working with you all to plan an even bigger Law Week in 2017!