Thursday, 12 November 2020, 12:30 – 2:00 pm ACDT  – FREE

Restoring our Family Structures: A Short Film and Webinar discussion with The Kinchela Boys Home Aboriginal Corporation

This NAIDOC Week, the Family Law Pathways Networks across Australia invite you to view and discuss the powerful short film, ‘The Kinchela Boys’.

The webinar will include:

Accounts from survivors of the Kinchela Aboriginal Boys Training Home (KBH) Uncle Roger Jarred, Uncle Bobby Young and Uncle James Welsh.

A screening of ‘The Kinchela Boys’, a short animated film that was co-written, animated and produced by KBH survivors who tell of their experiences at the KBH and about their lives since.

A live Q & A with Uncle James Welsh, KBH Kin Connect Team Leader, Lesley Franks, whose father attended KBH.

Kinchela Boys Home Aboriginal Corporation (KBHAC) was established in 2003 by Stolen Generation survivors of KBH, an institution on the Mid North Cost of NSW that was run by the NSW Government for over 50 years to house Aboriginal boys forcibly removed from their families. KBHAC supports KBH survivors who live across NSW and interstate, as well as their descendants and immediate families who live throughout Australia.

Uncle Michael James ‘Widdy’ Welsh, Number 36, is a Wongaibon man. The Wongaibon People are part of the Wailwan Nation which includes Coonamble in the Central Western Plains of New South Wales and is where Uncle Michael was born. He is a Stolen Generations survivor who at the age of eight was kidnapped from his mother. He, along with five other siblings were taken from his mother by the police and then further separated from each other. Only Uncle Michael and his brother Barry were kept together, both sent to Kinchela Boys Home. At Kinchela Boys Home (KBH), he was given the number 36 and his brother 17. They remained in KBH for five years. Uncle Michael went on to help establish some of the first Aboriginal organisations in Coonamble. He has been a member of the Kinchela Boys Home Aboriginal Corporation since 2009. He is employed as the KBH Peer Support Social and Emotional Wellbeing Worker and has held the position of Treasurer since 2011.

Uncle Michael is a member of The Healing Foundation’s Stolen Generations Reference Committee which guides The Healing Foundation’s Stolen Generations work, ensuring it meets the unique needs of Stolen Generations survivors and their families. Uncle Michael passionately believes in making sure his pain stops with him and is fighting to stem the intergenerational trauma in his family by restoring his family structure. He and other Stolen Generations are focused on truth telling to ensure these acts of genocide are not forgotten and so to ensure the policies inflicted on him, his siblings and other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children are never repeated.


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Tuesday, 20 October 2020, 12:30 – 2:00 pm ACDT – FREE

Associate Professor Kate Fitz-Gibbon & Professor JaneMaree Maher: The views of Australian judicial officers on domestic and family violence perpetrator interventions

The Family Law Pathways Networks across Australia invite you to join a free webinar by Associate Professor Kate Fitz-Gibbon & Professor JaneMaree Maher.

Despite increasing acknowledgement of the importance of perpetrator interventions in the delivery of integrated responses to family violence and promoting perpetrator accountability, there remains very little understanding of how magistrates and other judicial officers view, manage and use perpetrator interventions. This presentation will present the findings for our ANROWS national project examining the use, influence and management of perpetrator interventions in sentencing of domestic and family violence offenders. Our analysis of interviews conducted with 60 judicial officers from across all Australian state and territory jurisdictions reveals that the effective use of perpetrator interventions in decision making is constrained by:

  • Limited judicial access to information about which (if any) perpetrator interventions have been previously used with a perpetrator,
  • A lack of knowledge among judicial officers about perpetrator program referral options, in relation to both the availability and nature of programs available, and
  • Uncertainty over the role of the judicial officers in holding perpetrators to account.

Each of these barriers to effective practice will be discussed alongside recommendations to support judicial officers and judicial practice moving forward.
Associate Professor Kate Fitz-Gibbon is Director of the Monash Gender and Family Violence Prevention Centre and an Associate Professor in Criminology in the Faculty of Arts, Monash University (Victoria, Australia). Kate conducts research in the field of family violence, femicide, criminal justice responses to family violence, and the impact of criminal law reform in Australia and internationally. Kate has advised on homicide law reform and family violence reviews in several Australian and international jurisdictions. In 2016 she was appointed to the Victorian Special Minister’s Expert Advisory Committee on Perpetrator Interventions and in 2018 she was appointed to the inaugural Board of Directors of Respect Victoria.

Professor JaneMaree Maher is an internationally recognised gender studies scholar with a focus on family lives and gender violence. Her research critically examines how social institutions such as families and the criminal justice system create gendered inequalities and inequities. Professor Maher is currently Associate Dean Academic Development in the Faculty of Arts and a key researcher within the Monash Gender and Family Violence Prevention Centre.



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Wednesday, 23 September 2020, 12:30 – 2:00 pm ACST  – FREE

Angela Lynch: Re-imagining just and safe outcomes for child and adult victims of domestic violence in the family law system in Australia

 The Family Law Pathways Networks across Australia invite you to join a free webinar by WLSQ CEO Angela Lynch.

Women’s Legal Service QLD and more broadly Women’s Legal Services across Australia have consistently advocated for the family law system to be more responsive to victims of domestic violence, over a number of decades. Since 2019, WLSQ has called for the family courts in Australia to become “Domestic violence and Family courts”.

In light of the tragic murders of Hannah Clarke and her children earlier this year, WLSQ called for a number of legal reforms, including the removal of the presumption of equal shared parental responsibility from the Family Law Act because of its danger to victims of violence and their children. Just recently, in response to these calls, the Honourable Graham Perrett MP Member for Moreton introduced a bill into federal parliament, on these terms.

Angela will speak to these issues and explore more fully the reasons behind the need for the change with specific reference to her learning’s and experience as a member of the QLD Domestic and Family Violence Death Review and Advisory Board.

If there was a true shift in focus in the family law courts and a re-imagining of justice for child and adult victims of domestic violence – what would this look like?

Angela Lynch AM is a lawyer and the CEO of the Women’s Legal Service (WLS) and across her 25 years with the service has made significant front-line contributions to the prevention of domestic and sexual violence.

Angela has led and made important contributions to the development of law reform at a State and national level. Angela’s expertise has been recognised through her appointment to the inaugural Queensland Domestic and Family Violence Death Review and Advisory Board in 2016, her reappointment in 2020 and as a member of the Queensland Sexual Violence Roundtable.

Angela is a member of the practitioner engagement group with ANROWS, was an advisory member to the Australian Law Reform Commission’s Review of the Family Law System, is currently an advisor to the ANROWS research on self-represented litigants in family law involving allegations of family violence and the AIC research Pathways to Intimate Partner Homicide.

Angela was awarded the 2017 Women’s Agenda leadership in the legal sector award and the Lawyer’s Weekly 2017 Not for Profit Lawyer of the Year and the Women in Law excellence award. She recently received a Member of the Order of Australia medal (AM) for her services to domestic violence prevention.


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Wednesday 2 September 2020, 12:30pm to 2:00pm ACST – FREE

Jennifer McIntosh: Child Inclusive & Developmentally Focused Dispute Resolution   Prof. Jennifer McIntosh, Ph.D. AM is a clinical and developmental psychologist, family therapist, and researcher.

In her research fields, Jennifer has specialised in the development of assessment methods and interventions for separated families in high conflict. In 2019, she received national recognition for her work, through the award of Member of the Order of Australia, for significant contributions to developmental psychology. In 2011, she was recipient of the AFCC Stanley Cohen Distinguished Research Award.  This international award recognizes outstanding research and/or research achievements in the field of family law and divorce.

She is known internationally for the development of the Child Inclusive Mediation process, supported by a four-year prospective study of outcomes, since replicated in the USA. Through this work, McIntosh has had a substantial impact on both policy and practice formation in Australian and international Family Law. Her family law work is now housed at www.childrenbeyonddispute.com

Jennifer continues her family trauma research now as Professor of Research with The Bouverie Centre, La Trobe University. She is also Adjunct Professor of Psychology at Deakin University, and Fellow of the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute. Jennifer has played a leading role in national and international research and associated professional development programs. Key stakeholders include the Australian Attorney General’s Department, Family and Community Services, The Office for the Status of Women, and the Family Court of Australia, the UK Family Justice Council, AFCC (USA).

In this webinar, award winning researcher, Professor Jennifer McIntosh will describe the rationale for applying a developmental perspective to family law dispute resolution, and detail two evidence-based approaches to this work, covering infancy through to late adolescence.

The principles of Child Inclusive Mediation and of the Young Children in Divorce and Separation program are briefly outlined, followed by a Q&A and group discussion.

The online training for both programs, housed on the Children Beyond Dispute website, is discussed.



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Wednesday 22 July 2020, 12:30pm to 2:00pm ACST – FREE

Nathan Wallis: Anxiety & Depression in Children & Adolescents

 Nathan Wallis has been captivating audiences globally through professional training events, the documentary “All in the Mind”, and as co-host of the TV Series “The Secret life of Girls”. His professional background includes early childhood teacher, child therapist, social service
manager, university lecturer and neuroscience trainer. Following his time at the University of
Canterbury, he founded a private training consultancy with the goal of facilitating easy to
understand professional development reflecting the latest neuroscience discoveries and their
practical, everyday implications. Nathan is is an advisor for the NZ Ministry of Education, and an expert advisor for NZ Ministry of Vulnerable Children. With a profound reputation as a lively and engaging speaker, Nathan uses humour and plain language to condense twenty-five years 0f neuroscience research into his unique ‘tell you how it is’ style.

In this webinar, Nathan will discuss the way the brain works, the human stress response system and the changes to the brain in the teenage years and will share techniques for managing stress, anxiety and depression in children and adolescents. Nathan will consider these issues in the context of family breakdown.


Part of the National Family Law Pathways Webinar Series


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Wednesday 24 June 2020, 12:30pm to 2:00pm ACST – FREE

Dr Margaret Spencer – Complex Needs: Parents with Intellectual Disabilities

Dr Margaret Spencer, University of Sydney, will argue that assessing what the best interest of a child, based on the current reliance on assessment of parenting capacity is a flawed process. She will look specifically at this in relation to families where one or both parents have disabilities. Margaret will propose that instead of asking, Is this parent capable of parenting? We should ask “How can the parenting of this child be supported?”


*Note that the times on the booking page are for AEST

Part of the National Family Law Pathways Webinar Series


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Wednesday 17 June 2020, 12:30pm to 2:00pm ACST – FREE

Rose Cuff – Parenting Capacity & Mental Health Webinar

Rose Cuff, Statewide coordinator, the Families where a parent has a mental illness Program will explore concepts of parenting & capacity in the context of deepening our understanding about the challenges & strengths experienced by parents, their children & families who live with mental ill health. Principles of engagement, validation & understanding what parents bring to the spaces in which we meet them, managing complexity & fostering resilient parent-child-family relationships.


*Note that the times on the booking page are for AEST

Part of the National Family Law Pathways Webinar Series


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Wednesday 10 June 2020, 10.30am to 12:00pm ACST – FREE

David Mandel – Best outcomes for children in domestic violence cases

Webinar with David Mandel of the Safe and Together Institute – using perpetrator patter-based approach to promote the best outcomes for children in domestic and family violence cases.


*Note that the times on the booking page are for AEST

 Part of the National Family Law Pathways Webinar Series


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Wednesday 3 June 2020, 12:30pm to 2:00pm ACST – FREE

Ben Grimes – Predictable Miscommunication

Understand the differences between Aboriginal and Standard English Narrative Styles with Ben Grimes, a lawyer and linguist who specialises in communication issues in the legal system and cross-cultural legal education.


*Note that the times on the booking page are for AEST

Part of the National Family Law Pathways Webinar Series


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Friday 29 May 2020, 9:30am to 10.30am ACST – FREE (places are limited so book early)

Support for Fathers, Online Workplace Training for Professionals and Services Working with Fathers and Families, presented by Dom Alford, and hosted by Relationships Australia, Victoria.

Join a FREE, interactive workplace training session and gain knowledge, practical advice and strategies to engage dads and families in positive and effective ways.

Online Workplace Training for professionals and services working with fathers and families
Topics include:

• 7 Types of Dad – a resource for dads

• Supporting dads who are working from home during COVID-19

• Adapting the Support for Fathers professionals’ toolkit for a COVID-19 world

• Dads staying connected

• What’s next? Future work with dads and families

This training is being delivered as part of the Support for Fathers project’s national roadshow, which includes community information sessions and professional training on our new resources.

For more information on Support for Fathers or to access free resources for professionals and fathers, visit  www.supportforfathers.com.au

To Book CLICK HERE  – note that times quoted on this link are for Victoria.  If you are in South Australia the session time is 9:30am to 10:30am.  Places are limited for this event so booking early is recommended.


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Friday 29 May 2020, 11:45am to 12:15pm ACST (Immediately before the ‘Our Kids’ Webinar) – FREE

Her Honour Judge Charlotte Kelly, Federal Circuit Court, Adelaide – Presenting an Update on Practices and Procedures Adopted by the Court to Manage Family Law Matters in these Unprecedented Times.

COVID-19 has presented us all with unprecedented challenges, not least the Family Law Courts who have had to not only adapt to restrictions, but also implement  practices and procedures to address an increased demand and urgency for Court intervention.

Judge Kelly will talk to us about the challenges the Federal Circuit Court has faced, how it has met those challenges, and what that means for our clients who are presently involved in Family Law proceedings, or who are considering making an application to the Federal Circuit Court at this present time.

In February this year Judge Kelly addressed a group of Family Law Pathways Project Officers from across Australia.  She talked about her early years in Family Law in the 1980s, and how different things were without the technology we have today.  None would have thought that just a month or so later that new technology would be so vital to the Court’s ability to maintain an effective service amidst tough restrictions.

The Federal Circuit Court has adapted remarkably well, and we look forward to hearing about how that has been achieved, and what information we should be providing to clients going forward.

For bookings please CLICK HERE

For enquiries please email m.ford@rasa.org.au 


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Friday 29 May 2020, 12:30pm to 1:30pm ACST – FREE

Robyn Sexton, former Federal Circuit Court Judge and Rick Welsh, Project Officer from the School of Science and Health at Western Sydney University – Presenting ‘Our Kids’ – How to Keep Them Out of the Care System

Robyn and Rick will introduce and present their very engaging and informative film ‘Our Kids’ to you, followed by a Q&A session that you can contribute to live through text.

This short film is aimed at encouraging Aboriginal community members to use the family law system.  It dramatises the role of an Aboriginal Health worker “Uncle Paul”. Uncle Paul assists Aboriginal community members to understand and use the Family Law system. He links families with legal services to help them protect children and keep children connected to family and culture. The film is written and directed by award-winning Indigenous filmmaker Larissa Behrendt AO.ck.

Former Federal Circuit Court Judge Robyn Sexton speaks about the case of a family from country NSW that inspired her to set up Australia’s first Indigenous list in family law.

In 2012, a grandmother we will call Maureen came before Federal Circuit Court Judge Robyn Sexton, asking for sole parental responsibility of her six grandchildren aged two to nine.

The children lived in country NSW with their mum and dad, who had family violence, alcohol and drug problems. Maureen, who had experienced her own alcohol and drug problems, knew they were at risk.

Although Maureen lived in a two-bedroom home in inner Sydney, she decided that she would somehow cope in order to protect her grandchildren. Maureen told Judge Sexton that a crowded house that was safe was a better option than the children having lots of space in the country, but being at significant risk of neglect and abuse.

The case was closely managed before Judge Sexton for two years, with multiple mentions, interim applications, and involvement from the Department of Family and Community Services (FACS) and other agencies.

Robyn Sexton was a Judge of the Federal Circuit Court of Australia from September 2004 until her retirement at the end of February 2018. She was a member of the Family Law Committee of the Law Society, and served on the Family Law Council.  She is currently on the Board of the Australian Chapter of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC).

Robyn has a strong interest in improving access to the family law system for indigenous Australians.  She was a member of the Court’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Access to Justice Committee from its inception in 2012 when the Court entered into a Reconciliation Action Plan with Reconciliation Australia, the first Court in Australia to do so. She established the first specialist indigenous list in family law in 2016 and that list continues in Sydney under Judge Boyle.  A list has since been established in Adelaide, in Melbourne and Alice Springs, and it is likely more will follow.

In 2019, on behalf of the Aboriginal subcommittee of Greater Sydney Family Law Pathways Network, Robyn obtained funding from the Federal Dept of Attorneys-General to make a short film for indigenous people, “Our Kids”, featuring the indigenous list. Its purpose is to show indigenous community members how they might be assisted by family law applications when families break down.  Robyn is a member of the NSW Law Society’s Indigenous Issues Committee and a community member of the Federal Circuit Court’s Committee.  She mediates family law disputes involving indigenous children on a pro bono basis.

Robyn has a long term interest in children’s issues, writing a manual for youth workers while still at University.  She spoke regularly when on the Bench on the care that must always be taken to protect the developmental needs of young children when making or seeking orders for the 0-4 year old age group.

Robyn practised law for 20 years including her own family law practice for over 10 years, before she was appointed to the Court.  She was also a member of the NSW Medical Board and Tribunal, the Social Security Appeals Tribunal, a Commissioner on the Legal Aid Commission of NSW, Deputy Chair of the Juvenile Justice Advisory Council, a CLC representative on the NSW Domestic Violence Committee and practised in the Children’s Court criminal jurisdiction.  Before studying law, Robyn was a current affairs television researcher at the ABC, and worked under the former Chief Justice Elizabeth Evatt on the Royal Commission on Human Relationships.  In the International Year of Women in 1975, Robyn devised and researched the concept for the Aboriginal film on women “Sister If You Only Knew”, which featured four outstanding aboriginal women in Adelaide.

The role of Uncle Paul in the ‘OUR KIDS’ film is based on Rick Welsh . Rick is a Project Officer from the School of Science and Health at Western Sydney University, and has been presented the 2017 Aboriginal Justice Award from the NSW Law Foundation.

Mr Welsh is the coordinator of ‘The Shed’ – a drop-in and referral centre in Western Sydney, which provides support for Aboriginal men who are experiencing problems with the justice system. The Shed also tackles health issues or family problems, and runs a suicide prevention program.

The Aboriginal Justice Award, sponsored by the Department of Justice NSW and held at NSW Parliament House, was presented to Rick Welsh by Tony McAvoy SC.

The Shed was established in 2004 as a partnership between the University’s Men’s Health Information & Resource Centre and Holy Family Church at Mt Druitt and has since been run by Aboriginal men, with the support of elders.

Rick Welsh came on board as the coordinator of The Shed eight years ago, following roles in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission and the Men’s Health Information & Resource Centre.

For Bookings please CLICK HERE

For Enquiries please email Michelle Ford, Senior Coordinator at m.ford@rasa.org.au


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Wednesday 27 May 2020 – 12:30 pm ACST – FREE

Liz Sanders –  The Attachment-Style Interview

The Attachment Style Interview is an evidence-based instrument that enhances practitioners’ understanding of family dynamics and the capacity of caregivers to develop meaningful strategies for resilience. The application of this approach moves practitioners from being trauma informed to being trauma responsive and is applicable across the lifespan.


*Note that the times on the booking page are for AEST

Part of the National Family Law Pathways Webinar Series


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Wednesday 20 May 2020 – 12:30 pm ACST  – FREE

Trent Savill – Understanding and Responding to Controlling and Escalated Behaviour in Children

This workshop supports professionals to better understand and respond to children and young people who engage in aggressive and controlling behaviours. The workshop will explore how developmental attachment impacts on our capacity to trust and hand over control to others, and also looks at the important cognitive skills required to be able to comply with the expectations of others.

CLICK HERE for a copy of the flyer.                                                                                                    To Book CLICK HERE

 *Note that the times on the flyer and booking page are for AEST

Part of the National Family Law Pathways Webinar Series


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Wednesday 6 May 2020, 12:30pm to 2:00pm ACST – FREE

Megan Hunter, Chief Executive Officer and Vice President at the High Conflict Institute, USA – Presenting Flipping the Script with Difficult People During Difficult Times

In the current economic, social, and political environment, managing high conflict behaviour and communication is essential.

Many of us are stressed by our own worries around health and job security and in these times of significant stress we see individuals behaving in an increasingly difficult way.

While there are billions of people suffering around the world, some individuals continue to hold on tighter to conflict and personal fixations than ever before.

This one hour Webinar will discuss simple theories around brain science which leads to individuals reacting in an irrational and difficult to manage manner when confronted by significant change and unrest. Following this live stream Webinar there will be 30 minutes of live chat Q&A.

We will talk about how we can communicate with such individuals effectively, while saving our sanity at the same time.

People with high conflict behaviors are the most difficult people to work with, work for, and to serve as customers, clients, students, parishioners, neighbours, and to deal with in our families—especially in difficult times.

Their behaviours get under our skin, make our hearts race, enrage and sometimes scare us. Their blaming and sometimes hostile communications disrupt our day and cause us a lot of stress consciously and subconsciously. Bottom line, they cause high levels of stress for those around them resulting from 4 core high-conflict issues:

  • unmanaged emotions
  • all-or-nothing thinking
  • extreme behaviours
  • preoccupation with blaming everyone else

They are not born bad . . . they are just people with behaviours shaped by past trauma, temperament at birth, and genetics in some cases . . . and they do not know their behaviors are working against them. There is a way to improve interactions with people who display high conflict patterns of behaviour but it’s opposite of what we know to do and are used to doing, or what we feel like doing.

This entertaining and educational workshop by author and high conflict expert, Megan Hunter, MBA, unveils the driving force (the complicated operating system) behind their behaviours and how to take opposite actions, which are not obvious or natural, with those who exhibit these behaviours.

The training starts with a cursory understanding of the neuroscience of the high conflict personality—the fear-based operating system that drives their behaviours. This understanding increases our empathy and thus our ability to manage interactions more successfully by focusing on helping them feel safe.

Next, a focus on planning for structure and setting limits is provided before shifting into the practical skills necessary to communicate in writing using our popular BIFF Response® method and our Calm2Think™ method with EAR Statements™ (Empathy, Attention, Respect).

And last but not least, we’ll take 5 minutes to talk about self care!

Megan Hunter, MBA, is a speaker, author, and the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of the High Conflict Institute. She has trained professionals and delivered keynotes to large groups on high conflict behaviours since 2008 in the U.S. and in 7 countries, and lead HCI’s diverse team of professional staff across three continents.

Ms. Hunter has strong leadership, policy and training experience during her eight years at the Arizona Supreme Court, Administrative Office of the Courts as Family Law Specialist.

She is founder and publisher of Unhooked Media, a publishing company focused on relationship and conflict revolution.

Ms. Hunter has provided training extensively across Australia and has a strong affinity for Australians, for the Family Law Pathways Network and for the good work of all Australians who have endured extraordinarily difficult times.

Please join your colleagues around the country with Megan for the timely workshop!

This Webinar is a free gift from Family Law Pathways SA to help front line staff and family law practitioners assist clients in these challenging times.

The live webinar has ended but the recording is available to view by clicking here.


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