27 June 2012
Kirby reveals workings of High Court
The Honourable Michael Kirby AC CMG, former Justice of the High Court of Australia (1996-2009), gave a lecture at RMIT University recently describing the High Court from the inside.
As part of Law Week he outlined to 80 people what it was really like working in the big building in Canberra.
He spoke about how cases were distributed to the justices, how they prepared for a hearing and the role of associates (clerks).
Other issues the Hon Kirby addressed over more than two hours, which included a question and answer session, were:
- the differences among the Justices prior to decision;
- the stress of special leave applications; and
- what it takes to be a Justice and an associate in the High Court.
The lecture was organised by the RMIT Graduate School of Business and Law and attended by staff and students and members of the legal profession and media, including The Australian Financial Review and Australian Associated Press (AAP).
Another RMIT event to help celebrate Law Week was a panel discussion about developments in restorative justice and the latest trends in alternative dispute resolution.
The panel of experts included Kathy Douglas, Senior Lecturer, Graduate School of Business and Law, and Desmond McDonnell, Senior Lecturer, RMIT School of Global Studies, Social Science and Planning, who both spoke about restorative justice and crime.
The other member of the panel was David Vinegard, a restorative justice facilitator with the Victorian Association for Restorative Justice, who addressed the issue of restorative justice in education.
The panel canvassed the place of restorative justice in dealing with conflict in schools and workplaces and in aiding courts to deal with offending.
The panel discussed the likely future of restorative justice and considered if this approach to dispute resolution could be used more widely to engage with conflict.
Law Week was organised by the Victoria Law Foundation and provided the public with a chance to go behind the scenes of the legal system.
The week enabled members of the public to get free legal information and services, take part in debates and discussions about legal and human rights issues, and speak to prominent legal practitioners.
The Honourable Michael Kirby AC CMG.
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