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Media Release: Volunteers honoured at Judiciary Volunteers Appreciation Dinner 2019

 

MEDIA RELEASE

Volunteers honoured at Judiciary Volunteers Appreciation Dinner 2019

 

For the first time, Long Service Awards were presented to volunteers of the Legal Assistance Scheme for Capital Offences (LASCO). These volunteers would have contributed to LASCO for more than 25 years. Under the scheme, the volunteers would assist a criminal defendant in a capital matter before the Supreme Court on a pro bono basis. The late Mr Suppiah s/o Pakrisamy, a steadfast supporter of such pro bono work was presented the LASCO long service award posthumously.

 

2.       Volunteers are an important pillar in the Singapore Judiciary, complementing the work of the Courts. Besides the LASCO long service award, other awards given out this year include the Outstanding Court Volunteer Award which comprises three categories – Open Category, Advocate and Solicitor Category, and Student Category – which recognises volunteers in various vocations including mediation and court-user assistance at the State Courts.

 

3.       A total of thirteen volunteers of the Supreme Court, the State Courts and the Family Justice Courts were honoured for their outstanding contribution, commitment and dedication to pro bono work (please see Annex A for details of the recipients).

 

4.       Chief Justice Menon, in expressing his deep gratitude to the volunteers said, “It is truly gratifying to see more volunteers giving so much of their time to the courts in the endeavour to ensure that those in need will have access to justice. Their invaluable time, effort and expertise for little or no material reward or publicity, driven solely by the desire to do the right thing, makes them our unsung heroes. The courts recognise and appreciate all their contributions”.

 

Issued by      : Supreme Court, State Courts, and Family Justice Courts

Date             : 11 October 2019

 

For further information or clarification, please contact:

Mr Khurshed Haron

Assistant Director

Office of Public Affairs

Supreme Court of Singapore

Tel: 6332 6164

khurshed_haron@supcourt.gov.sg

 

Ms Marilyn Tan

Assistant Director

Communications Directorate

State Courts

Tel: 6435 5652

marilyn_tan@statecourts.gov.sg

Ms Elyana Ishak

Assistant Director

Office of Public Affairs

Family Justice Courts

Tel: 6325 7039

elyana_mohd_ishak@fjcourts.gov.sg

 

 

About the Judiciary Volunteers Appreciation Dinner

The Judiciary Volunteers Appreciation Dinner is organised annually to recognise the sterling contributions of Court volunteers who have assisted and supported the Judiciary’s various programmes for litigants and Court users. Comprising members of the Bar, professionals and individuals from diverse backgrounds, the Court volunteers play an important role in the Judiciary’s effort to ensure that everyone who needs to access justice before the Courts is able to do so with the help of lawyers and other volunteers.

  

Annex A

 

Judiciary Volunteers Appreciation Dinner 2019

Award recipients

 

  1. Mr Tan Lam Siong

    Award: Outstanding Court Volunteer Award (Advocate & Solicitor Category)

    – conferred by the State Courts

     

  2. Ms Jasmine Mah

    Award: Outstanding Court Volunteer Award (Open Category)

    – conferred by the State Courts

     

  3. Mr Wong Weitao

    Award: Outstanding Court Volunteer Award (Student Category)

    – conferred by the State Courts

     

  4. Mr Ram Goswami

    Award: LASCO Long Service Award

    – conferred by the Supreme Court

     

  5. Mr N K Rajarh

    Award: LASCO Long Service Award

    – conferred by the Supreme Court

     

  6. Mr Peter Cuthbert Low

    Award: LASCO Long Service Award

    – conferred by the Supreme Court

     

  7. Mr Suppiah s/o Pakrisamy

    Award: LASCO Long Service Award

    – conferred by the Supreme Court

     

  8. Mr Syed Hassan Bin Syed Esa Almenoar

    Award: LASCO Long Service Award

    – conferred by the Supreme Court

     

  9. Mr Mohamed Muzammil Bin Mohamed

    Award: LASCO Long Service Award

    – conferred by the Supreme Court

     

  10. Mr Singa Retnam

    Award: LASCO Long Service Award

    – conferred by the Supreme Court

     

  11. Mrs Chia Swee Tin

    Award: Long Service Award (15 years)

    – conferred by the Family Justice Court

  12. Mr Lim Sing Lip, Philip

    Award: Long Service Award (10 years)

    – conferred by the Family Justice Court

     

  13. Mr Chew Yew  Kuen, Michael

Award: Long Service Award (10 years)

– conferred by the Family Justice Court


Please refer to Annex B for information on the Outstanding Court Volunteer Awards 2019 and Annex C for information on the State Courts award recipients.

 

 

Annex B

 

 

Outstanding Court Volunteer Awards 2019

The Outstanding Court Volunteer Awards (Advocate & Solicitor Category and Open Category), conferred by the State Courts and presented to individuals who have demonstrated outstanding commitment and dedication as volunteers with the State Courts. The Outstanding Court Volunteer Award (Student Category), conferred by the State Courts, recognises students who volunteer their time with the State Courts under the student volunteer programmes such as the Student Representatives Programme, and Student Research Assistants Programme (please refer to Annex D).

  

Annex C

 

Outstanding Court Volunteer Awards 2019

Award recipients

 

  1. Mr Tan Lam Siong

    Award: Outstanding Court Volunteer Award (Advocate & Solicitor Category)

    – conferred by the State Courts

     

     Mr Tan Lam Siong has been a Volunteer Mediator with the State Courts since 2010. A versatile and highly competent mediator, he is equally adept at mediating both civil and criminal cases. Mr Tan has mediated many cases successfully and has done so with confidence and skill. In this regard, he demonstrates a clear understanding of the legal and factual intricacies, as well as parties’ relationship dynamics, in the cases he mediates. 

     

     

  2. Ms Jasmine Mah

    Award: Outstanding Court Volunteer Award (Open Category)

    – conferred by the State Courts

     

    Ms Jasmine Mah has been a Volunteer Mediator with the State Courts since 2016, and has been mediating Small Claims Tribunals cases. A committed volunteer, Ms Mah is always keen to improve herself and would exchange her views and learning points on mediation with the Assistant Registrars on which strategy to adopt to best resolve disputes in challenging cases and situations.

     

     

  3. Mr Wong Weitao

Award: Outstanding Court Volunteer Award (Student Category)

– conferred by the State Courts

         

Wong Weitao is a second-year Law Student from the National University of Singapore who is a Student Representative with the State Courts. Mr Wong has been enthusiastic and proactive in participating in the programme. Apart from explaining court processes to litigants on neighbour dispute and harassment applications, he also takes the time to guide fellow students on how to attend to litigants.

 

Annex D

 

State Courts Student Volunteer Programmes

 

Student Representatives Programme

 

Launched in June 2016, the Student Representatives Programme (SRP) is a collaboration between the State Courts, National University of Singapore (NUS and Singapore Management University (SMU). It is designed to assist qualifying litigants-in-person (LIPs) in harassment cases, community disputes, small claims and employment claims cases. Students participating in this scheme perform the important role of guiding litigants to navigate and adhere to Court processes. They assist in the following ways:

 

  • Explaining the application procedures and timeline
  • Explaining forms and their requirements
  • Helping to perform pre-filing assessment
  • Helping to complete forms, subject to LIPs passing a means test
  • Helping to check that documents are assembled and organised for filing

 

While students are able to provide information on Court and tribunal processes, they are not permitted to provide legal advice. The work of the students is supervised by the NUS Pro Bono Office and SMU Pro Bono Centre, but does not constitute legal advice. LIPs who require legal advice will be referred to volunteer lawyers at legal clinics.

 

The SRP gives students the opportunity to interact with LIPs, judges and experienced Court administrators. It also provides them with exposure to a wide range of cases involving a variety of issues that affect the common citizen.

 

Student Research Assistants Programme

 

The Student Research Assistants Programme (StRAP) is a collaboration between the State Courts and Temasek Polytechnic. Under the StRAP, Temasek Polytechnic’s Law and Management Diploma Programme students provide support for the State Courts’ Sentencing Information & Research Repository (SIR), a sentencing database of the results of cases prosecuted in the State Courts. Supervised by State Courts’ officers and judges, the student research assistants analyse and summarise case information presented in these cases, including the outcome of appeal cases. The case analysis and summaries are then incorporated in the SIR.

 

Through StRAP, the student research assistants are able to gain experience in legal research, complementing their curriculum.  Their support, in turn, enables the State Courts officers and judges to update the SIR efficiently so that the Courts, Prosecution and the Defence Bar can access SIR to refer to precedent cases that may have a bearing on their cases.

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