2021 Conference: I Can’t Believe it’s Not Bali – Lockdowns and Lockups

CLANT 2021 conference poster

Chips Mackinolty 2021*

I Can’t Believe it’s Not Bali: 

Lockdowns and Lockups

The 18th Biennial CLANT Conference from 10-13 August 2021 in Darwin is fast approaching and it promises to be our biggest ever!

The conference will commence with a cocktail party on the evening of Tuesday 10 August and culminating in our Gala dinner on Friday 13 August 2021.

The 2021 CLANT conference coincides with both a global pandemic that has seen an immediate reimagining around the practice and procedures of criminal law both home and abroad; and importantly it also coincides with the 30th Anniversary of the final report of the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody. It took about30 days for the pandemic to create real change in the processes surrounding the manner we practice criminal law, yet in 30 years we have seen little change or meaningful improvement in access to justice for First Nations people. This conference looks to focus on what we can do to improve the criminal justice system, starting by looking in our own backyard.

We are happy to announce that given the financial implications of COVID, our full registration fee has been reduced to $1000 per delegate- all inclusive, and our group registration fee (for 10 or more) has been reduced to $950 per delegate! This updated information is on the Solusi website and all registration details for the conference are accessible at https://www.solusibs.com/

In addition to our confirmed events, we anticipate offering an Aboriginal Legal/ Cultural Tour of Larrakeyah Country culminating in a traditional ‘Salt Water Ceremony’ prior to the welcome drinks on the evening of Tuesday 10 August. More info to follow!

We are delighted to confirm a programme containing a number of presenters and panellists including:

·         Phillip Boulten SC, Forbes Chambers, NSW

·         Acting Justice Lex Lasry QC,  Supreme Court of Victoria

·         Justice Jenny Blokland, Supreme Court of the Northern Territory

·         Lloyd Babb SC, Director of Public Prosecutions NSW

·         David Edwardson QC, Bar Chambers, SA

·         John B Lawrence SC, James Muirhead Chambers, NT

·         Stephen Lawrence, Black Chambers, NSW

·         Professor Dr Thalia Anthony, University of Technology Sydney

·         Nicole Spicer, Acting Managing Principal Solicitor, Victorian Government Solicitor’s Office

·         Beth Wild, Managing Solicitor of the Criminal Section, NAAJA

·         Stephen Karpeles, Custody Notification Scheme Manager, NAAJA

·         Trevor Moses, William Forster Chambers, NT

·         Travis Jackson, Sir Owen Dixon Chambers, NSW

·         Steven Ledek, Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, NT

·         Ian Rowbottam, Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, NT

·         Andreea Lachsz and Monique Hurley, VALS and HRLC respectively

·         Lisa Parker, University of South Australia

·         Ben Grimes of ARDS Aboriginal Corporation

·         Bali Players, play reading performance, written and directed by Rex Wild QC

We have papers from a variety of presenters from most of our nation’s criminal jurisdictions. Papers will cover issues including:

·         Public health responses to the COVID-19 pandemic in prisons

·         State intervention on the rights of the citizen

·         Policing homelessness in the NT

·         Developing laws around judge alone trials

·         Linguistics v Law: reconciling divergent approaches to section 85 of the National Uniform Evidence Act

The dates for our conference coincide with the Darwin Festival and our dry season so Festival Park will be a must visit for food, drinks and entertainment in the evenings.

Given it is Darwin’s peak tourist season securing your accommodation booking as soon as possible is a must. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact myself and Dee Berkley (dee@solusibs.com).

For families travelling there are a number of activities within walking distance of the Conference including:

·         The Wave Lagoon Wave Lagoon, safe swimming for all ages | Darwin Waterfront Precinct

·         Waterfront Precinct – cafes, restaurants, lagoon area Map and directory – food, drink, hotels | Darwin Waterfront Precinct

·         Aquapark  Darwin Waterfront Precinct | food, shopping and events

·         Stokes Hill Wharf (eateries, restaurants and departure point for Jet Ski tours, fishing and sunset tours) Stokes Hill Wharf dinning and sunset views | Darwin Waterfront Precinct

·         The Deck Chair Cinema – Darwin’s legendary open air cinema  Deckchair Cinema – movie times & tickets

·         Indo Pacific Marine Indo Pacific Marine

·         WWII Oil Storage Tunnels Tour WHAT TO DO IN DARWIN TODAY WWII TUNNELS | DARWIN MUST SEE AND DO – Things to do in Darwin (ww2tunnelsdarwin.com.au)

·         PLUS our Courts, Parliament House, Government House, Art galleries, amazing coffee, food and tour departure points are only a short walk away.  Hit up a local for Darwin ‘must see and do’s’

Our conference has never been held in Darwin before and we look forward to welcoming practitioners, judicial officers and key stakeholders to our home.

These conference dates coincide with the annual Darwin Festival and we anticipate many opportunities for learning as well as leisure and recreation.

Please forward this email to colleagues, contacts and networks who may be interested in attending.

Register here. If you have any further questions or issues please contact Dee Berkely via Dee@solusibs.com or 0437 710 090.


* I’ve been doing images for CLANT since 1997, and the Dingo has always been a feature as a symbol of “defending the unrepresented accused”. This time a bit different–all but one of their previous conferences have been held in Bali. For those, I have always used the Frangipani, the floral emblem of Bali. Coincidentally, last year, the city of Darwin “rediscovered” after 54 years its floral emblem was Brachychiton Megaphyllus, or the Red Kurrajong. Thus, a different flower for this year’s conference!  (Chips Mackinolty)