Stephanie is in her third year of a Bachelor of Laws/Bachelor of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Griffith University. She tells us about her Justice Journey placement with Brisbane Central Probation and Parole Office.
My Justice Journey started in the heart of the Brisbane CBD at the Brisbane Central Probation and Parole Office. This office is responsible for the supervision of offenders on probation or parole orders, and assists them in the process of probation, reporting, and finding help where they need it – with housing or drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs.
Walking in to the office, it was clean, organised, colourful and welcoming. I meet with the employee I would shadow for the day, this being Freya. She was very welcoming, happy and enthusiastic about our day together. I was led down a long hallway to the back of the building, behind a door were the cubicles of the other staff, all filled with pictures of family and friends as well as piles of paper.
Freya showed me to her desk. She introduced me to her co-workers on the way through, explaining their roles and eventually explaining her own role – representing the Probation and Parole Office in court. She would report to a judge, if required, about the activity and progress of the person in question while on their probation order.
After this, Freya and I ventured down to the Roma Street courthouse where we meet with Victoria, a co-worker of Freya’s. Both Victoria and Freya showed me the ropes when in court and the role of a probation and parole officer. I observed several cases to which Victoria had to give a statement on the compliance of a defendant with his probation order. I also witnessed the intensity of courtroom 18, this room is where the probation officers’ cases are held.
Stephanie and Freya at the Brisbane Probation and Parole Office.
After court, the day ended where it began, back at the office. Freya and Victoria presented a slideshow, highlighting the keys job roles of employees at the office as well as the relative legislation the probation and parole office has to abide by. This information was very useful, and I found myself connecting the process I had witnessed earlier during the day to the legislation and rules in front of me.
Overall the experience was very insightful and eye-opening into the role and purpose of probation and parole. My experience has left me informed and motivated to finish my degree within the legal sector, so I can be a part of the process that assists defendants in making a better life for themselves.
I am extremely grateful for the opportunity I received and would definitely recommend the program to others.