ANZ, ASB and Westpac expand partnership with Community Law

Published: Thu 13 Oct 2016 09:22 AM
ANZ, ASB and Westpac expand partnership with Community Law
An expanded partnership between three of New Zealand’s major banks and Community Law announced today will enable Community Law to sharpen its focus on supporting the most vulnerable people in our communities.
The partnership between ANZ, ASB and Westpac and Community Law will see the banks make an annual multi-million dollar donation to Community Law.
Community Law Centres o Aotearoa Co-Chairs Cameron Madgwick and Bernadette Arapere say the partnership will help Community Law Centres in more than 140 locations around New Zealand provide more and better services to clients – delivering access to justice for all New Zealanders.
“This is a clear demonstration of social responsibility by the banks and their commitment to a healthy civil society.”
For the last 25 years, in an effort to assist Community Law and in accordance with relevant legislation, banks have paid interest from solicitors’ nominated trust accounts to a Lawyers and Conveyancers Special Fund. Interest is not normally paid to lawyers and conveyancers on such accounts. Each year around $6 million is paid by the major banks to this fund and that amount helps to fund Community Law Centres.
However, given the increased needs of Community Law, ANZ, ASB and Westpac have agreed to voluntarily increase their annual contributions over and above their legislative requirements and to donate this additional amount directly to Community Law.
Mr Madgwick and Ms Arapere say that partnership with the banks means that Community Law can look to the future with more confidence and contribute to better social and financial outcomes for people and communities.
“Our 24 Community Law Centres are at the heart of our democracy, providing access to justice to the most vulnerable in our society and ensuring they can solve their problems early. This means their problems are less likely to escalate and it takes pressure off the wider justice system.
“Community Law wants to take this opportunity to publicly acknowledge ANZ, ASB and Westpac for their strong display of social responsibility in partnering with Community Law to help build stronger and more resilient communities in Aotearoa. They saw what needed to be done and made sure that it happened.”

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