Territory Stories

The Northern Territory news Sat 23 Jan 2010



The Northern Territory news Sat 23 Jan 2010

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NT news


The Northern Territory news; NewspaperNT




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Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin; Australian newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin

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Nationwide News Pty. Limited

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Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.

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28 Northern Territory News, Saturday, January 23, 2010 www.ntnews.com.au P U B : N T N E W S D A T E : 2 3 -J A N -2 0 1 0 P A G E : 2 8 C O L O R : C M Y K www.fahcsia.gov.au Development of National Standards for Out of Home Care The Australian Government, through the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs, in conjunction with State and Territory governments and the non-government sector, is developing National Standards for Out of Home Care. The development of these National Standards is an important action under the National Framework for Protecting Australias Children 2009-2020. Further information about the National Framework can be found at: http://www.fahcsia.gov.au/sa/families/pubs/Protecting_children/ Pages/default.aspx KPMG has been engaged to assist with the project. A paper has been developed to generate discussion on issues, and possible solutions, that need to be considered in developing National Standards. To obtain a copy of the Consultation Paper, either: visit: www.nationalstandardsforoutofhomecare.com; or send an email to: contactus@nationalstandardsforoutofhomecare.com Individuals and organisations are invited to provide feedback to guide the development of National Standards for Out of Home Care. Feedback, comments and/or enquiries, should be emailed to the address above. Feedback should be lodged by 5pm (AEST) on Friday 26 March 2010. Responses must contain the submitting person/organisations contact details, including email address. adcorp20050 Taking pridewithout OUR LONGEST SERVING JUDGE: A Supreme Court ceremonial sitting for the retirement of Justice David Angel. Pictures: BRAD FLEET I wonder whether otherTerritorians wonder about the things that I wonder about. T HANK you all who have attended today for the honour you have done me by your presence. I am particularly grateful to the people who have travelled from afar, a number from interstate. That in itself is a compliment. I am particularly pleased by the presence of the Hon Austin Asche QC. He was my first Chief Justice; and also the Hon John Gallop QC, the longest-serving non-resident Judge of this Court. He has come from interstate and I regard it as a great compliment that he has come to see me off. I am also pleased by the presence of Doyle CJ and David J of the South Australian Supreme Court. Doyle CJ and I graduated on the same day in 1966 from Adelaide University and we were appointed Queens Counsel on the same day in 1981, and we had many a battle in court together. I am also particularly pleased by the presence of someone regarded as the queen of the Tiwi Islands, Jean Baptiste Apuatimi. It has been an honour and a privilege to have served the Court since 8 May 1989, as has been said, before the fall of the Berlin Wall. It is a great honour ... to have been permitted to play a part ... in the administration of justice in the Northern Territory. I leave the practice of the law with many happy memories, associations and friendships. I have at all times enjoyed a cordial relationship with the profession both here and in Alice Springs. The Territory has been a very formative experience for me. It is where I met Anita, sine qua nihil. It is where we intend to remain. On the great authority of Dixon CJ, when one retires one should only indulge in retrospect a little. Of course, much has changed in the course of my life in the law. Matriculation Latin was a necessary prerequisite to doing a law degree at Adelaide University. Capital punishment had not yet been abolished. Corporal punishment had not yet been abolished. The third edition of Halsbury was the current edition of Halsbury. It contained no entry under the heading Administrative Law. That was only introduced in the fourth edition of Halsbury. There was no Trade Practices Act. There was no consumer protection legislation, save for some ancient sections in the Sale of Goods Act. The case of Hedley Byrne v Heller was decided while John and I were at university, liberating the law of negligence that we now recognise today. There was fault-based divorce. Of adultery, Bray CJ once said in context of the changing of the law: What was once an ecclesiastical crime is now no more than a social accomplishment. I am appalled at the mention today (by Attorney-General Delia Lawrie) that in all I have delivered 486 judgments, 313 of which have been reported. I had no idea I had such an output. It appals me because I think theres far too much reporting of judgments. My first reported judgment, as far as I am aware, is in the back of volume 88 of the Australian Law Reports. The current volume is volume 260. Prime Minister Keating once infamously said that the best way to see Darwin was from 35,000 feet on the way to Paris. Ian Callinan, the former High Court Judge, has recently written an article in Spectator magazine that I recommend to you. He is far more complimentary about Darwin and disagrees with former Prime Minister Keating. The art historian, Francis Haskell, said its always easier to study the past than the present. The famous Kenneth Clark, of Civilisation fame, said: We have no idea where were going, and sweeping, confident articles on the future seemed to me intellectually the most disreputable of all forms of public utterance. With that admonition I am not going to make any predictions about the future, particularly about this unpredictable place called Darwin. However, there are many aspects of Darwin that make me wonder particularly about the past and the present. I sometimes wonder whether Robert Rauschenbergs quip about Los Angeles is applicable to Darwin today, namely, that Its miles wide, yet only half an inch deep. I wonder whether it is still true to say of Darwin, as was said by Ernestine Hill in her 1951 book, The Territory, that apart from a few old faithfuls there are only two classes of people in Darwin those paid to stay here and those with no money to leave. I wonder also about John George Knights lament in the 19th century that he feared he had come to Darwin too soon. Perhaps in some funny way we all have. I also wonder at the accuracy of the remark, Darwin has a great future and regretfully it always will have. I wonder at the all too ready acceptance of the notion that uniformity of law throughout Australia is a desirable thing. I once attended a legal convention in Adelaide. There were High Court Judges there, there were eminent jurists, academics of the highest order and everyone was agreed we should have uniform laws, (saying) why should we go across a state border and have a different speed at which one can drive? Why should we have different procedures from state to state? Everyone was agreed we should have a uniform law throughout Australia. At the end of the session, a man stood up I will never forget it and he said something along these lines, with an American accent: Ive been here for about a fortnight and I want you to know something. Hobart is different from Alice Springs. He undid in that one statement everything that had preceded it. I wonder at the advisability of online law teaching, especially of legal ethics. I wonder what is achieved by statutes which state the obvious. For example, under our Sentencing Act, the judge is required to have regard to the seriousness of the offence when passing sentence. Thus enlightened, the judges of this court pass sentence. I wonder at the apparent influence and power of large law firms, which now have separate representation on the Law Council of Australia. THIS week, Justice DAVID ANGEL retired from the Northern Territory Supreme Court. After almost 21 years on the bench, he was the longest-serving judge in the NT. And hes also known as a colourful speechmaker, a believer in the old art of rhetoric. This is an edited version of his speech.

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