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National Indigenous Legal Conference draws crowds in Perth

4 October 2018

The National Indigenous Legal Conference was held in Perth from 25-26 September 2018. 

The opening address was provided by Pro Vice Chancellor Indigenous Education, University of Western Australia, Professor Jill Milroy AM.

Keynote addresses were also provided by Chancellor University of Western Australia and Law Council Justice Project Steering Committee Chair, The Hon Robert French AC, who spoke about Simple Justice – Recognition and Sovereignty.

Law Council Treasurer Konrad de Kerloy gave a keynote address, informing of the Justice Project and its contribution in assisting Australia’s First Peoples to determine how Australia’s justice system could be reformed so the practical experience of equality before the law may be achieved.

Law Council Indigenous Legal Issues Committee Co-Chair Tony McAvoy SC, spoke on the topic of Sovereign People, Self-Governance and Treaties and Law Council Indigenous Legal Issues Committee member, Professor Megan Davis, presented on the topic of Advancing Constitutional Reform.

A dinner was held following the two-day conference where Victorian Barrister Tim Goodwin was named 2018 Indigenous Legal Professional of the Year for his passion and commitment to improving justice outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians.

Mr Goodwin was recognised through his work as Junior Counsel to the Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory and pro-bono work as well as involvement in numerous committees including the Victorian Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission, National Apology Foundation and the Human Rights Law Centre Boards, the Indigenous Justice Committee and Law Council’s Indigenous Legal Issues Committee, which demonstrated a significant contribution to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community.

Noah Bedford of Coffs Harbour was awarded the Indigenous Law Student of the Year Prize and aspires to improve access to justice for Indigenous people and the delivery of culturally appropriate legal services.

The Law Council congratulates both Mr Goodwin and Mr Bedford on their outstanding achievements and upon receiving this years awards.

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