Sorry, you need to enable JavaScript to visit this website.

Shadowboxing: Tony Birch on growing up in Melbourne.

It was a privilege to have renowned academic, author and educator Dr Tony Birch join us for our 2021 Koori Twilight series marking the 30th Anniversary of the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody.

In conversation with Magistrate Abigail Burchill, Dr Birch generously shared his own experiences growing up Aboriginal in Melbourne.

With characteristic insight and authenticity, Dr Birch spoke about his troubled youth and how the trajectory of his life was fundamentally transformed by the kindness and generosity shown to him by key people he encountered in the justice and academic system, who helped him to recognise his own value.

Speaking to the importance of the values of respect, dignity, and kindness in the justice system, Dr Birch said:

‘when you talk about the courts and the role of judicial officers…I think it is remarkable the impact you can have on people and people who might have really low self-esteem…and I know people are in the courts for having done wrong…but to try and convey to people that they have value as young people in particular and to try and recognise a pathway for them…’

View the full conversation below.