Guide to Giving
MEDIA, JOBS & RESOURCES FOR THE COMMON GOOD
NEWS  |  General

Royal Commissioner Brian Martin Steps Down


Monday, 1st August 2016 at 1:39 pm
Wendy Williams, Journalist
The royal commissioner into juvenile justice Brian Martin has resigned just four days after being appointed by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.


Monday, 1st August 2016
at 1:39 pm
Wendy Williams, Journalist


0 Comments


FREE SOCIAL
SECTOR NEWS

 Print
Royal Commissioner Brian Martin Steps Down
Monday, 1st August 2016 at 1:39 pm

The royal commissioner into juvenile justice Brian Martin has resigned just four days after being appointed by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

People behind bars

The former supreme court judge confirmed he would stand down at a media conference in Canberra on Monday following reports about a possible conflict of interest.

Martin said that criticisms of him had been “disingenuous” and “ill-informed”.

However he told reporters he would not have the full confidence of sections of the Indigenous community which had a “vital interest” in the joint Commonwealth-NT inquiry.

“As a consequence, the effectiveness of the commission is likely to be compromised from the outset,” Martin said.

“I am not prepared to proceed in the face of that risk. This royal commission is far too important to undertake that risk and, in the public interest, personal considerations must take second place.”

Martin stressed however that his resignation did not imply he doubted his capacity to be independent.

He also said his decision was not a criticism of the government, prime minister or attorney general.

In an official statement published on Monday he said his decision was in the public interest.

“The inquiry to be undertaken as royal commissioner is extraordinarily important,” he said.

“It is essential that those persons and organisations directly affected by the inquiry, and the broader community, have full confidence in the independence and competence of the commissioner and, ultimately, in the findings of the commissioner.

“Since my appointment was announced I have been extremely disappointed with the disingenuous and ill-informed comment that has ensued.

“However, notwithstanding the ill-informed nature of the commentary, it has become apparent that, rightly or wrongly, in this role I would not have the full confidence of sections of the Indigenous community which has a vital interest in the inquiry.”

Martin said his family had been drawn into the debate and he was not prepared to allow the “unwarranted intrusion” into the life of his daughter to continue.

Since his appointment last Thursday, questions had surfaced regarding his perceived conflicts of interest, connected to his time as chief justice of the NT Supreme Court from 2004 to 2010 and his daughter’s previous job.

He was forced to issue a statement on Friday after it was revealed his daughter, Joanna Martin, had been employed as a justice adviser to territory Labor attorney-general Delia Lawrie from late 2009 to March 2011, the same time period that will be covered by the royal commission.

There have also been calls for at least one Indigenous co-commissioner to be appointed.

The commission follows a damning ABC Four Corners report into abuse in the juvenile detention system in the Northern Territory.

The ABC program likened the juvenile detention system to Guantanamo Bay in the US showing footage of a 17-year-old strapped into a mechanical restraint chair in the Northern Territory’s Don Dale detention facility, along with a series of other videos, showing the repeated stripping, assault and mistreatment of him and other boys including the use of tear gas.


Wendy Williams  |  Journalist |  @ProBonoNews

Wendy Williams is a journalist specialising in the Not for Profit sector.

Guide to Giving

FEATURED SUPPLIERS


Helping the helpers fund their mission…...

FrontStream Pty Ltd (FrontStream AsiaPacific)

...


HLB Mann Judd is a specialist Accounting and Advisory firm t...

HLB Mann Judd

NGO Recruitment is Australia’s not-for-profit sector recru...

NGO Recruitment

More Suppliers


YOU MAY ALSO LIKE

Survey Reveals Australian Attitudes to Torture in Conflict

Lina Caneva

Tuesday, 6th December 2016 at 3:05 pm

Indigenous Advocate Named 2016 Telstra Business Woman of the Year

Lina Caneva

Tuesday, 22nd November 2016 at 12:30 pm

Aussies Say Yes to Multiculturalism, Marriage Equality But No To Politics

Lina Caneva

Tuesday, 22nd November 2016 at 11:05 am

NFP Collaboration Needed to Assist Migrant Women

Lina Caneva

Thursday, 3rd November 2016 at 3:53 pm

POPULAR

Moves to Stop Volunteering at Overseas Orphanages

Luke Michael

Wednesday, 13th September 2017 at 1:54 pm

Future Uncertain for Disability Organisations Following Funding Cuts

Wendy Williams

Tuesday, 19th September 2017 at 8:29 am

Majority of NFPs Are Not Believed to be Well-Run, According to New Survey

Luke Michael

Tuesday, 12th September 2017 at 4:14 pm

More Australians Are Giving Time Not Money

Wendy Williams

Monday, 11th September 2017 at 5:07 pm

Write a Reply or Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Guide to Giving
pba inverse logo
Subscribe Twitter Facebook

Get the social sector's most essential news coverage. Delivered free to your inbox every Tuesday and Thursday morning.

You have Successfully Subscribed!