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Constitutional convention would offer a way forward on Aboriginal recognition

OPINION: Professor George Williams AO, the Sydney Morning Herald, 19 July 2017.

 The Referendum Council has released its report into how the constitution should recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

The report seeks to cut through the thicket of ideas that have grown up over a decade. It recommends that the Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition pursue a single change to the constitution, namely a representative body of Indigenous peoples to advise Parliament on the making of laws.

Tony Abbott's 'solution' to Senate deadlock has its own problems

OPINION: Professor George Williams AO, the Sydney Morning Herald, 3 July 2017.

When Tony Abbott laid down his conservative manifesto last week, the immediate question was how this would affect the standing of Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. Less attention was paid to Abbott's alternative program for government. It includes a proposal for governments to bypass the Senate, which he described as the "mother of all reforms".

The homeless have no choice but to live life in public

OPINION: Amelia Thorpe, The Sydney Morning Herald, 29 June 2017.

The recent forced removal of homeless people from a camp in central Sydney raises some difficult questions, not least being whether it is reasonable for the bankers, lawyers and politicians of Martin Place to be protected from the disturbing sight of the homeless.

Tenants’ calls for safe public housing fall on deaf ears

OPINION: Gemma McKinnon, The Conversation, 27 June 2017.

I have worked and researched in housing law for one-third of my life. When news of the Grenfell Tower fire broke, our network of tenant advocates and housing researchers was heartbroken and angry, but not necessarily surprised.

Islam and the State

Dr Melissa Crouch spoke to ANU Myanmar Research Centre’s, Myanmar Musings podcast series (13 June 2017) regarding her book, Islam and the State and touched on the challenges and the use of Islamic personal law in Myanmar.

Q: Why did you chose to frame a book about Muslims in Myanmar in regards to interactions with the state?

Embrace robotic disruption but don’t lose your human skills

OPINION: Associate Professor Michael Legg, The Australian, 16 June 2017.

Technology has started to become a source of angst for current and future lawyers. Concern follows from headlines such as “Robots replace lawyers” and “Machines replace lawyers” telling stories of elation at the end of lawyers.

However, as Robert Bolt said through the voice of Thomas More in A Man For All Seasons, if you cut down all the laws “d’you really think you could stand upright in the winds that would blow?”

Proposed citizenship test would forgo a ‘fair go for all’

OPINION: Khanh Hoang, The Interpreter, 16 June 2017.

The Australian Government this week introduced a new Bill into parliament to amend the Citizenship Act 2007. The move comes just two weeks after submissions to its discussion paper had closed – those submissions have not been made public.

Overreaction to Khayre's crimes exactly what terrorists seek

OPINION: Professor George Williams AO, The Sydney Morning Herald, 18 June 2017.

The crimes committed in Melbourne by Yacqub Khayre led to a predictable political response. Within days, state and federal leaders announced tougher anti-terrorism measures, including limits on parole and further powers of detention. These responses satisfied a political need to be seen to act, but it is not clear that they will make the community safer.