Service Suspensions

Townsville office phone & internet services are back online.

Issues with the ATSILS Townsville office phone & internet services have been resolved.

You can reach our Townsville office on: (07) 4722 5111

If you still experience issues please call: 1800 012 255

Service Suspensions

Townsville Office Phone and ICT Outage

ATSILS Townsville office is currently experiencing a critical technical service outage affecting phone and ICT services.

Service restoration is estimated to be in place by tomorrow 10/08, updates will be provided when available.

In the meantime please call 1800 012 255 if you need to make urgent contact with the Townsville team or contact our Cairns office which are assisting with client enquiries – (07) 4046 6400.

Service Suspensions

Cairns Regional Office Upgrade!

Our Cairns office has had an upgrade, and our CEO – Shane Duffy and Director of Communications and Sector Engagement – Graham White, had a chance to view the completed works while in town meeting with the team. The upgrades were undertaken to meet the needs of our growing workforce and the interior design incorporates our new branding and landscape images to give the space a strong sense of connection to the region we service.

The executive spent valuable time with staff from the Civil, Criminal and Family law teams, the Throughcare team and the client services team discussing local service delivery opportunities and issues. They also met with the Atherton Community Justice Group, Family Responsibilities Commission, The First Nations Justice Officer, working to develop collaborative partnerships to improve service outcomes for community and clients.

Our Cairns office offers Criminal, Civil & Family law services as well as Throughcare services to communities in FNQ.



ATSILS adopts a new brand to mark 50 years of service.

December is the 50th Anniversary of the founding of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service in Brisbane.

To mark this milestone we wish to advise our clients, communities, and stakeholders that we are adopting a new logo and visual brand.

ATSILS Board of Directors endorsed the undertaking of the corporate rebrand project in mid-2022 under the theme ‘ATSILS – 50 Years Strong’.

First Nations creative agency – Relative Creative was engaged to undertake the strategic design phase & we thank them for their creativity and vision throughout the project. We’d also like to thank Goreng Goreng artist Rachael Sarra who was commissioned to create a specialty artwork that has been integrated into our visual identity to communicate our strong commitment to community and culture.

Their innovative creative practice combined with the leadership of the ATSILS team has established a brand that we are proud to present to our communities and stakeholders. It is a brand that we believe honours our proud history, will connect more deeply with our communities, and aligns well with our ongoing mission of advancing the legal and human rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people throughout.

Please note our transition to the new visual branding will begin throughout December to coincide with our 50-year celebrations. Implementing the branding across all our communication resources is expected to continue into early 2023.

To read more about the story behind the new ATSILS branding click here.


ATSILS Change in Auditors – Notification

Change in Auditors:

We advise that the organisation has changed its auditors in the financial year 2021/2022 from Vincents Chartered Accountants, Santos Place, 34/32 Turbot Street, Brisbane to Grant Thornton Australia Limited, Level 18,145 Ann Street, Brisbane.

The change in auditors is in accordance with good corporate governance practice.

MEDIA RELEASE: ATSILS calls for an independent body to investigate public complaints against police

Queensland needs an independent body to investigate complaints against police officers to ensure greater transparency and community confidence in law enforcement.


The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service (QLD) LTD (ATSILS) is appalled at the alleged behaviour of a police officer in Cunnamulla who was recently filmed threatening to ‘flog’ and ‘hurt’ a member of the community in the south west Queensland township.

ATSILS CEO Mr. Shane Duffy said, “If the investigation substantiates that the police officer indeed made the threats as alleged, then it would be difficult to justify any outcome other than the officer’s dismissal. The officer’s actions (if substantiated) not only undermine the Queensland Police Service’s (QPS) own documented ethical standards and the Queensland Public Service Code of Conduct, but also the local community’s expectations and confidence in law enforcement.

“Police officers are public servants who are entrusted with a range of powers and responsibilities critical to maintaining community safety. The community expects these powers and responsibilities will be exercised in line with the highest standards of professionalism given the level of training police receive and the important role they play in the community.”, Mr. Duffy said.

“If a citizen was to threaten a police officer in the same way this member of the public was threatened in this video, I would guarantee they would be charged. It should be without question that the same standards, in terms of criminal behaviour, should apply to the police as to the wider community”, Mr. Duffy said.

ATSILS understands an informal investigation into the incident is being undertaken by the QPS. Our communities have no confidence in the current process of police investigating public complaints against police internally. ATSILS has been calling for a legislative change to this process for decades in line with The Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody (RCIADIC) Recommendation 226 which clearly outlines a way to deal with community confidence in relation to such matters.

Recommendation 226 states that in all jurisdictions the processes for dealing with complaints against police need to be urgently reviewed. The RCIADIC recommended that legislation should be based on the following principle amongst many others, specific to police – That complaints against police should be made to, be investigated by or on behalf of and adjudicated upon by a body or bodies totally independent of Police Services. An independent investigation benefits both the complainant and the police, it ensures greater transparency and thus trust in the police service in general.

Media Contact for Mr Shane Duffy:


Download Media Release [PDF]

ATSILS (QLD) a joint winner at the 2021 Queensland Reconciliation Awards

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service (QLD) Ltd was a joint winner last night in the “Partnership” category of the 2021 Queensland Reconciliation Awards for our work with key partners in delivering the Northern Peninsula Area Licensing Muster Initiative.

We would like to extend our congratulations also to key partners involved in the initiative – Northern Peninsula Area Justice Services Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Corporation (NPA Community Justice Group) and Queensland Police Service (Bamaga Station).
The award is a great credit to our team up in the Torres Strait and NPA regions and in particular Annabelle Craft (our Prevention, Intervention and CLE Officer)– whose professionalism and hard work was a key driver of the partnership initiative.
We’d also like to acknowledge C’Zarke Maza our Regional Manager in the NPA and Torres Strait regions, who first raised the challenge surrounding unlicensed driving charges in the regions with the executive – which was then taken up at the departmental level by Shane Duffy our CEO. Whilst with departmental support the wheels were put in motion, it would have been easy for the initiative to grind to a halt – but with Annabelle at the steering wheel, such was never going to happen.
The Northern Peninsula Area Licensing Muster Initiative is a justice reinvestment strategy that has been providing cross-agency, holistic, evidence-based, proactive, and culturally safe support to the five communities of the NPA around licensing, registration, and identity documents since 2019.
The initiative aims to reduce unnecessary contact that Aboriginal peoples and Torres Strait Islander peoples experience with the criminal justice system related to driving and vehicle related offending. Such contact often leads to offenders being sent to correctional facilities located thousands of kilometres away from their community.
The initiative arose through prolonged observation of the high numbers of community members facing court action and punishment for non-violent driving-related offences, as well as social and economic exclusion. It appeared that many community members lacked sufficient or consistent primary identity documentation, immediately precluding them from accessing the services and opportunities many Australians take for granted.
Congratulations to Annabelle, the team and all partners involved. This initiative is a great example of the targeted impact justice reinvestment strategies can have on addressing the over-representation and unnecessary contact Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples experience in the justice system.
To read more on the success of this program visit:

Our Ipswich office making sure their local community has a voice!

Out in our Ipswich office, Regional Manager Kevin Rose invites local elders & respected persons to speak to our Ipswich team at the end of every staff meeting.

Making sure the local community has a voice and staying in touch with grassroots people is vital to informing our cultural proficiency and ensuring our legal service delivery is responsive to local community needs.

Well done Kevin and all the team in Ipswich.



Sorry Business and Funeral – COVID-19 Updated for Information

Sorry Business and other cultural activities are very important. But it is more important to keep Elders — and others who are already ill — safe by following the restrictions around gatherings.

For the latest information and guidelines please visit:


QUT Indigenous Pre Law and Justice Program visit to ATSILS

EQASA0yU0AEBze_It was great to have students from QUT’s Indigenous Pre Law and Justice Program visit our Brisbane office this week. These bright and deadly ones spent time with our team to learn more about the important role of ATSILS in the function of the justice system and our work in protecting and advancing the legal & human rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

The students were welcomed by our Director of Sector Engagement and Communications – Graham White, and members of our Legal, Court Support and Prevention, Intervention and Community Legal Education teams enjoyed sharing insight into the key roles they undertake in delivering legal services to the local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community.

Increased representation from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the legal sector is an important element in addressing the ongoing disadvantage our people experience in the justice system. AT ATSILS we are committed to fostering partnerships with progressive academic institutions like QUT (Queensland University of Technology) and welcome the opportunity to play our part in inspiring the next generation of legal practitioners along their career paths.

Photo Credit: (QUT Indigenous Pre Law and Justice Program)