Announcing PIAC’s new Principal Solicitors

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August 6, 2019

Picture L-R: Camilla Pandolfini, Jonathon Hunyor, Michelle

We are delighted to announce the appointment of Camilla Pandolfini and Michelle Cohen as PIAC’s new co-Principal Solicitors, following the departure of Laura Lombardo.

‘Camilla and Michelle have significant experience driving successful strategic litigation at PIAC and both bring a depth of experience in achieving outcomes for clients and the community. We are looking forward to working with them in this critical leadership role,’ said PIAC CEO, Jonathon Hunyor.

Michelle has been a Senior Solicitor at PIAC since 2012. She has over 12 years experience working as a lawyer in NSW, Queensland and Victoria in areas including discrimination and human rights, consumer rights, child protection and native title.

Michelle has been leading PIAC’s work on discrimination, and has acted for clients in unlawful disability discrimination claims including against the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Coles, and the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Michelle represented Graeme Innes in his landmark disability discrimination claim against NSW Trains.

Michelle has led PIAC’s Mental Health Insurance Project, which aims to reduce unlawful discrimination by insurers against people with past or current mental health conditions, and conducted work for PIAC on the recent Banking Royal Commission. Michelle has also worked on PIAC’s class action on behalf of young people falsely imprisoned by NSW Police.

Camilla has been a Senior Solicitor at PIAC since November 2012 and has recently been leading PIAC’s work on police accountability and rights in detention. Camilla has over 11 years’ experience as a lawyer in Victoria, the United Kingdom and New South Wales.  Prior to PIAC, Camilla worked at the Prisoners’ Advice Service in London, where she ran human rights cases on behalf of prisoners.

Camilla co-authored the first research study with academic Vicki Sentas on the Suspect Targeting Management Plan. Published in October 2017 for the Youth Justice Coalition, the report received widespread attention from government, the media and the NSW police oversight body, the Law Enforcement Conduct Commission (LECC).

Camilla settled PIAC’s class action on behalf of young people falsely imprisoned by NSW Police and was the solicitor for PIAC’s 2017 High Court challenge to the federal government’s decision to hold a postal survey on marriage equality. Camilla has also run significant litigation in discrimination, policing and rights in detention.  Camilla chairs the NSW Legal Assistance Forum Prisoners’ Forum and is a member of a number of other sector committees.  

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