Understanding trans-generational trauma in Aboriginal communities
4 August 2016
The NSW Bar Association hosted a seminar to discuss the effects of grief and loss passed down through generations of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families as a result of traumatic experiences. This was a joint initiative of the Law Society of NSW Indigenous Issues Committee, the NSW Judicial Commission Ngara Yura Committee and the NSW Bar Association Indigenous Barristers’ Strategy Working Party.
The three speakers, Dr Robyn Shields, Magistrate Sue Duncombe and Mr Brian Dowd, discussed what trans-generational trauma is and how its impacts can be addressed. The focus of the seminar was on Aboriginal communities and how improving understanding about trans-generational trauma can contribute to improved justice outcomes for Aboriginal people.
Aboriginal trauma, Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder and the juvenile justice system: a volatile cocktail
6 October 2016
The NSW Bar Association hosted a seminar to discuss approaches to alcohol and other drug management and health initiatives to reduce the contact between vulnerable Aboriginal young people and the juvenile justice system. This was a joint initiative of the NSW Judicial Commission Ngara Yura Committee, the NSW Bar Association Indigenous Barristers’ Trust and the Law Society of NSW Indigenous Issues Committee.
The speakers were June Oscar AO, 2016 Desmond Tutu Fellow and proud Bunuba woman from the Central Kimberley, and Judge Dina Yehia SC. June Oscar spoke about the community health and social reforms that she championed in Fitzroy Crossing WA, to tackle and eradicate the social, psychological and community dysfunction arising from Aboriginal early childhood trauma and foetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD).
Judge Dina Yehia SC spoke about the proposal for a District Koori Court in NSW, similar to the current Youth Koori Court pilot at the Parramatta Children’s Court, as a way to address the increasing rates of Indigenous incarceration rates.