ANU Indigenous Law Reform and Advocacy Competition: Black Lives Matter

ANU Indigenous Law Reform and Advocacy Competition: Black Lives Matter

Are you passionate about Indigenous justice and law reform? Are you interested in developing your advocacy skills?

The ANU is hosting the Inaugural Indigenous Law Reform and Advocacy Competition, which is open to all law schools across Australia. This year’s theme is Black Lives Matter.

The competition has now closed.

2020 Winners

Congratulations to the winners, Rochelle Erwin, Lily Trinh, Lily Ballot Jones, Jules Ioannidis, Jordan Zambelli and Zachary Plant from Swinburne University!

Read an interview with the team by Lawyers Weekly here.

2020 Submissions

La Trobe University (Kiara Colantuono):

Macquarie University (Jessica Pereira, Elizabeth Clarke and Aleysha Roughley):

Swinburne University (Rochelle Erwin, Lily Trinh, Lily Ballot Jones, Jules Ioannidis, Jordan Zambelli and Zachary Plant): 

University of Adelaide (Christina Akele, Elina Sheeba Jose, Gemma Dawe, Hamish McNamara, Hana Ali, Jeff Norton, Karl Perkins, Maddi Woolley, Netra Ramkumar, Nicholas Reese, Olivia Edmonds, Paige Cowles, Ruby Schutz and Thu Nugyen):

University of New England (Faduma Jama, Nejla Muhammad)

University of Melbourne (Jesse Loudovaris, Kate Moriarty, Malaika Khatthak, Marian Liwanen, Matt Healy, Milan Kantor and Nicholas Ong):

How to participate

Competitors will submit a 5-10 minute video clip addressing the following question: 

In 2020, tens of thousands of Australians took part in ‘Black Lives Matter’ protests, in solidarity with protestors from the US and other parts of the world. What law reforms do we need in Australia to give effect to the Black Lives Matter movement’s goals and how will these reforms best be achieved?

The Black Lives Matter Movement emerged in the United States in 2013 in response to increased police brutality and institutionalised racism targeting African-American people. Global recognition of the movement reignited in May this year with the death of George Floyd in an instance of excessive police brutality. Floyd’s final words ‘I can’t breathe’ drove home the movement’s pertinence to Australia, being the same last words of David Dungay Junior, a young Dunghutti man who died at the hands of prison guards in Sydney late 2015. 

The competition aims to provide Australian law students with an opportunity to put their skills to use in exploration of these important issues. Competitors may simply record themselves presenting their ideas but can also, if they choose, employ more creative techniques; including perhaps visual prompts or video footage to reinforce their ideas. No previous experience in video production or editing is required. 

The scope of what competitors may discuss is intentionally broad; they are encouraged to think creatively and develop unique perspectives on this subject area. For guidance and inspiration we have compiled a list of relevant resources, which is available here.

Students whose videos are shortlisted will present their law reform and advocacy ideas to the judging panel. The winning team will have the prize money ($1000) donated in their names to the Indigenous-led charity of their choice. The competition will feature panel discussions by prominent members of the legal community with experience in this space, which will be open to all competitors. 


  • Each Australian university can submit one entry. There is no limit on the number of students who can participate in creating the video.
  • You must have full copyrights to the submitted material, including sound effects and music if used.
  • Competition submissions must not include any endorsements of products or services, or any obscene, violent, racist or defamatory content.
  • The copyright of the materials submitted for this competition remains with respective participants. However, each entrant grants ANU the right to use the submitted materials in its communication crediting the copyright owners.


Submissions close: Monday 9 November 2020, 5pm AEDT

Please contact Dr Kate Ogg with any questions:

Announcement of winner

Friday 4 December, 2-5pm
Via Zoom Meeting

The finalist entries will be shown in an online event on the afternoon of Friday 4 December 2020. Our judging panel will watch the entries, provide feedback and select the winner.

Our judging panel: His Honour Justice Myers (ALRC Commissioner, Federal Circuit Court of Australia); Leanne Liddle (Director of Aboriginal Justice Unit within the NTG Department of the Attorney- General and Justice); Teela Reid (Criminal Defence Lawyer at Legal Aid NSW); and Mary Spiers Williams (Australian National University). Dr Virginia Marshall will provide a keynote address. 

Updated:  10 August 2015/Responsible Officer:  College General Manager, ANU College of Law/Page Contact:  Law Marketing Team