Talking Justice invites us to ask if there is always a clear and just solution to every problem. It challenges us to enter into a conversation about justice that respectfully acknowledges different perspectives. And it asks us to consider the place of the law and justice in a free society.
Quality public engagement around justice issues is critical. Our understanding of what is meant by ‘justice’ has real and immediate impacts on our lives and the health of our community. Loddon Campaspe CLC believes that an open dialogue around issues of justice is essential to the success of our work.
With this in mind, in 2014 Loddon Campaspe CLC created Talking Justice: a space for Central Victorians to come together to share and discuss social justice concerns in a stimulating and respectful environment.
From 2014-2017, Talking Justice has become a feature event during Law Week. Over the last four years our speakers have ranged over topics as diverse as public health policy to refugees, social justice and the creative process, the environment, crime and punishment, restorative justice, transgender rights and sexuality. And we’ve brought some of Australia’s finest speakers with a range of perspectives to Bendigo to explore what we mean by justice, from Raimond Gaita to Eva Cox, Mick Dodson, Clementine Ford, Father Frank Brennan, Antoinette Braybrook, Julian Burnside, Helen Zsoke, Shane Howard, Sukhjit Kaur Khalsa, Tim Costello, the Hon. Chief Justice Diana Bryant AO and Liana Buchanan.
In 2018 Talking Justice tackles #MeToo
A long battle has been fought for women to feel safe to share their stories of sexual harassment and abuse, where for too long such incidents have been unchecked and perpetrators not held to account.
Now as the #MeToo campaign gains momentum and more women come forward to share their experiences, some observers suggest that due process is not being properly extended to the accused. Others have argued that the presumption of innocence is a legal standard that does not apply in everyday life, and that we should question whether due process is being demanded for reasons of justice, or as cover for something less sincere.
Are the concerns regarding due process and presumption of innocence valid? How can the rights of the accused be balanced with accountability, change and the need to create a safe environment for women to share their stories?
Speakers: Van Badham, Moira Rayner and Kate Wright
Moderator: John McPherson (Partner, Arnold, Dallas, McPherson)
Thursday 17 May, 5.30-7.30pm
Bendigo Town Hall
189-193 Hargreaves St, Bendigo
This is a free event. Bookings via our Talking Justice partner Bendigo Library.
Van Badham is a writer, commentator, activist, occasional broadcaster, theatremaker and one of Australia’s most controversial public intellectuals.
In addition to a weekly column for Guardian Australia, her work has appeared in The Age, Australian Cosmopolitan, Daily Life, Southerly, Women’s Agenda, Britain’s Daily Telegraph and in anthologies for UQP, Hardie Grant and Monash University Press.
She is a frequent guest on panels for ABC’s Radio National, The Drum and Q and A, Channel 7’s Sunrise, the All About Women festival and The Festival of Dangerous Ideas.
As a playwright, her work has been performed across Australia and the UK, in the US and Canada, and in Iceland, Sweden, Switzerland, Italy, Slovenia, Germany and Austria, and she is the recipient of three Premier’s awards for stage writing. Her first novel, Burnt Snow, was published by Pan Macmillan in 2010. Born in Sydney, Van is a very proud alumnus of Port Hacking High School Miranda, the University of Wollongong, the University of Sheffield (UK) and Melbourne Uni. She is active on Twitter via @vanbadham Photo: Pia Johnson
Kate Wright is CEO of Loddon Campaspe Centre Against Sexual Assault. She has extensive experience in social policy in government and with community across a wide range of portfolios including housing, alcohol and other drugs, place management and gender equity. Her work has focused on advocacy and social justice issues working with a range of agencies and partners to influence and achieve real and sustainable change at a community and individual level. In her current role Kate is committed to addressing the impact of sexual violence for individuals and their families and responding to the causal factors that contribute to it occurring.
Moira Rayner is a (employer- related) self-employed workplace lawyer and investigator who is sometimes remembered by the elderly as the Commissioner for Equal Opportunity for Victoria who was “made redundant” by the Kennett government after she encouraged the public outrage that prevented him from moving women prisoners into Jika prison to save money. Until 2018 she chaired the LIV’s Workplace Relations Section.
Still a busy advocate for good governance, human rights and civil liberties – she co-wrote two best-selling books: one with Joan Kirner, The Women’s Power Handbook, and the other, with Jennifer Lee, Rooting Democracy: growing the society we want. Moira has a particular interest in the prevention of family and other violence. She follows Van Badham on Twitter and Ignatius of Loyola on Facebook, and tries not to be typecast.