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The Legal Needs Project is led by Dr Catherine Hastings, Research Fellow, Macquarie Law School. Catherine secured a three-year Macquarie University Research Fellowship (MQRF) to study the legal needs of clients of the Australian legal assistance sector.

The Legal Needs Project is advised by a Reference Group with members occupying a diversity of roles within organisations across the Australian legal assistance sector.

Dr Catherine Hastings

Catherine has over a decade’s experience in academic and applied research settings, including running running her own social research and evaluation consultancy.


Since 2011, Catherine has worked for community legal centres and their peaks on advocacy, policy, project management, data analysis and training projects. With Justin Finighan, she developed the National Legal Needs Assessment Toolkit and trained over 35 Community Legal Centres in its use. Catherine has a PhD in Sociology from Macquarie University.

Macquarie University Profile

Reference Group

Marie Baird, Victoria Legal Aid

Gerard Brody, (formerly) Consumer Action Law Centre

Helen Campbell, Women's Legal Service NSW

Jane Cipants, Legal Aid NSW

Emma Golledge, Kingsford Legal Centre

Brodie Lewis, Albany Community Legal Centre

Jamie McConnachie, NATSILS

Chelsea McKinney, Community Legal Western Australia

Cathy McMorrine, Community Justice Services SA

Nadine Miles, Aboriginal Legal Service (NSW/ACT)

Rosslyn Monro, Community Legal Centres Queensland

Susan Scott, Data and Research Consultant

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