High School students, Caitlin and Sippy, share their day job shadowing Bronwyn, a Senior Case Manager at the Southport Probation and Parole Office. Probation and Parole focuses on delivering supervision and surveillance of offenders, providing strong links with the courts and the judiciary and the referral and supervision of rehabilitation programs to help some Queenslanders get their lives back on track.
Our day started when we all met at the Parole and Probation office located in Southport, where we introduced ourselves. We then went to the courthouse and encountered media who were photographing citizens rallying against a particular case.
We were privileged to sit among the seats in the Magistrates Court in front of the Magistrate to witness the adjournments. Several law professionals were present such as solicitors and law clerks that came alongside their clients to represent them. For those clients unable to attend, video conferencing took place.
It was interesting to observe the different types of offending and the circumstances that brought the Defendant’s before the court. Sitting in on a court case made us not only feel involved in the community but gave us firsthand experience on what it will be like to support the community when we are older. Observing this was an interesting experience as we learnt new words and how a courtroom worked. On the day, we followed Bronwyn, and discovered her role in the court was to provide advice to the Magistrate about whether people were suitable for supervision orders. Also, Bronwyn would prosecute breaches of probation for offenders who had not complied with the requirements of their order.
The Magistrate ensured court etiquette was followed, such as not wearing sunglasses inside.
Our Justice Journey was an excellent opportunity for an immersive experience in the legal system. Throughout the day, we were able to speak to legal professionals who had a strong knowledge of this system, which gave us an understanding of events as they took place around us.
Through shadowing a Probation and Parole Officer, we attained an insight into the operations of the Magistrates Court and the way they deal with probation breaches. Before going on our justice journey we were both slightly unsure if we definitely wanted to continue on the legal pathway, however now we are both sure that we want to pursue a legal career as we think we will find it rewarding and interesting.