MEET CARMELA TASSONE
Carmela has a significant depth of knowledge and experience that comes from working on issues facing vulnerable people, and in particular women, children and young people in a range of roles for some 30 years.
Her own work with government and non-government organisations, as well as the findings of various reports and inquires over the years, including the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, convinced her of the need for a specialist legal and consultancy service focused on strong, robust advice and capacity building for organisations working with vulnerable children and young people and in particular, those in the child protection, out-of-home care systems and/or with disability.
In particular, the strong need for an experienced practitioner who understands that child care and protection, and disability are complex multifactorial issues that cannot be addressed with a “quick fix” or a simple, superficial “add-on”; someone who has a detailed understanding of the care and protection sector, law, policy and compliance environment from different perspectives. Carmela has worked on such issues in both government and non-government environments, as well as directly with children and young people, their families and communities.
Drawing on her qualifications and experience, Carmela is very comfortable working with people across disciplines and understands the multidimensional nature of issues impacting on vulnerable children and young people and their families.
Establishing CP Partnerships legal & Consulting brings together Carmela’s unique knowledge and experience and allows her to focus on what she is most passionate about - working with others to develop a more just and caring society that priorities the care and protection of its most vulnerable children and young people.
Key personal approach
Beyond her given legal expertise, Carmela likes to take an educative approach to her practice by sharing her knowledge and experience along the way, empowering clients to understand issues as they arise - fostering strength and independence rather than dependency on external experts.
Making an early decision to transfer from a university degree in chemical engineering, Carmela started her working life as a high school teacher, teaching maths and science in disadvantaged schools. She soon moved to working more directly on issues impacting people with vulnerabilities in the community sector, before being admitted as a practicing lawyer in 2002.
In the community sector Carmela worked amongst other roles, as a front-line youth worker with homeless young people in crisis and in other supported accommodation, and subsequently as a youth housing service co-ordinator and manager in Western Sydney.
Before starting her law studies, Carmela worked closely with local indigenous women elders in Maningrida, Arnhem land, NT as the Women’s Centre Co-ordinator on a range of programs for women and children, including running the local refuge.
Before establishing CP Partnerships Legal & Consulting, Carmela worked as an in–house lawyer advising and representing NSW government agencies on a range of sensitive and challenging areas but with a focus on care and protection and related matters. She has also worked in-house for a specialist member of the Community Legal Centres’ network and a non-government disability and out-of-home-care service provider.
Carmela has worked on issues of child protection rights both domestically and internationally in Asia and the Pacific. She worked as a child protection specialist for an international development agency in China and subsequently as a Freelance Child Protection in Development Consultant. Carmela has undertaken child protection field work in Indonesia, Nauru and PNG and has undertaken research projects covering many of the countries across South East Asia and the Pacific.
Carmela’s qualifications include: Bachelor of Education (Secondary) from the University of Sydney, Bachelor of Laws from the University of Technology, Sydney, and post graduate Master’s degrees in Women’s Studies (University of NSW) and Communications and Cultural Studies (University of Western Sydney).