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Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Castan Centre / King & Wood Mallesons Annual Lecture - Professor Emeritus Ron McCallum

Nothing About Us Without Us: National Responses to the CRPD Six Years On

For far too many years, decisions were taken on behalf of persons with disabilities without their acquiescence. The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) came into force some six years ago. It marked a paradigm shift by exhorting governments to respect the human rights and inherent dignity of persons with disabilities.

Emeritus Professor Ron McCallum AO studied law at Monash University, graduating in 1972. In 1974 he completed a Master of Laws Degree under the Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship Plan at Queen’s University, Canada. It was at this point that Ron developed his interest and expertise in labour and employment law. After teaching at Monash for eighteen years, he moved to Sydney in 1993 where he was appointed to a full professorship at the University of Sydney. Blind since his birth, this appointment made Ron the first totally blind person to be appointed to a full professorship at any Australian or New Zealand university. He served as Dean of the University of Sydney Law School between 2002 and 2007

His expertise in labour law and occupational health and safety law saw him appointed as chair or member of various federal and state inquiries. Ron was also the inaugural president of the Australian Labour Law Association, serving in that role from February 2001 to November 2009. From September 2006 to September 2009, Professor McCallum served as the Asian regional Vice-President of the International Society for Labour and Social Security Law.

Since 2006, Professor McCallum has been a member of the Board of Vision Australia, and in November 2006 he was appointed as one of the two Deputy-Chairs of this Board. Vision Australia assists blind and vision impaired people in Australia, but especially in the States of New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland, and in the Northern Territory. 

Professor McCallum was nominated by the Australian government to stand as an independent expert for the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities when that Committee was first established in 2008. The primary function of the Committee is to monitor the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Ron served as inaugural member, then Chair of this Committee and continues this year as Vice-Chair. He also served as the Chair of the UN Committee of the Chairs of all of the UN Treaty Bodies in 2011-2012.
Date: Friday, 22 August 2014
Time: 1pm to 2pm
Venue: NAB building at 700 Bourke Street, Melbourne
RSVP: castan.centre@monash.edu or telephone 03 9905 3327
Public event - All welcome

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