Each year, in July, the Indigenous voices of Australia become stronger as we all celebrate NAIDOC Week. A welcome focus on the history, culture and achievements of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
As a lawyer, my mind inevitably turns to the High Court decision in Mabo on 3 June 1992.
As a non-Australian (but awaiting acceptance!) it serves as a timely reminder that this wonderful land upon which I live was not discovered by my fellow Brits in 1788 but taken from the people who prospered before them (as was the case for so many other lands across the globe).
An unfortunate history of inequality, disrespect and disenfranchisement of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples followed British occupation.
Trying to address those wrongs should be at the forefront of all our minds this week, but not forgotten next week or the next after that or the next….!
This year’s theme is Voice. Treaty. Truth. Let’s Work Together and we are all invited to walk together in a movement of the Australian people for a better future.
I hope we all take up that invitation, recognise the truth of the past and commit to a future of walking together side by side on this land with dignity, respect, health, happiness and prosperity.
Unfortunately, we have had to close our physical office during the Covid-19 crisis which has caused extraordinary disruption with all staff needing to work from home (as best they can).
As a father with small children that both suffer with respiratory illnesses, we are keeping our children home. It will be very difficult for our office to run effectively for the foreseeable future and I appreciate your patience at this time.
Given the difficulties, we are temporarily limiting our home office 'core hours' to 10.00am to 2.00pm, Monday to Friday for phone calls and 'ordinary' working hours.
Please do not expect that we will be able to address any enquiry or phone call outside of those times and we will get back to you and address your enquiry as soon as possible.
We hope you appreciate the situation we are in and I certainly apologise for any inconvenience or delay this may cause.
If your email or enquiry is genuinely urgent please call me on my mobile 0420 308151 and I will answer if I am free but otherwise leave a voicemail alerting me to the urgency of the matter.
We wish you well and hope you stay safe during this unprecedented time.