In 2017, the Western Australian Bar Association (WABA) developed and introduced an Indigenous Clerkship program.
Each year, the WABA offers at least two, 3 week paid clerkships to indigenous students who are studying law at a Western Australian university.
This initiative has received the enthusiastic support of both the Supreme Court through the Chief Justice and the Judges of the local Federal Court Registry.
The Supreme Court of Western Australia participates in this initiative by providing recipients of the clerkship with the opportunity to spend a week in the chambers of a Judge of Court. The WABA is grateful to the Chief Justice and Judges of the Supreme Court for their support of and willingness to participate in the program.
The clerkships, which are generally undertaken during the first semester break, include a short induction, following which the students spend two weeks with members of the WABA and a week as a “shadow” Associate to a Supreme Court Judge.
‘Call for Applications’ are distributed to all law schools and student associations in Western Australia in March each year. Applications (which generally close in late April) may be made by letter, and should include a resume and a personal reference.
The Indigenous Clerkship program is an important feature of a number of initiatives which have been or are being developed by the WABA to create greater inclusiveness and diversity at the Bar.