Sit Down Girlie


The journal's most popular column is ‘Sit down Girlie’ which presents snippets on legal issues from a feminist viewpoint — with a touch of humour. Acknowledgments are due to a certain Registrar of the Family Court of Australia for the title of this column. A solicitor who was appearing before him was waiting patiently for her male colleague to finish addressing the JR. Assuming he had completed his submission, she rose to her feet — prematurely it appears — and the JR roared ‘Sit down girlie’!

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Girlie Goes Whirly

Mary Christmas and Noelle Noelle

Zoe’s Law

Concerns have been expressed about the implications of a Bill introduced in the New South Wales parliament that allows people to be charged with grievous bodily harm if they hurt an unborn baby. Known as Zoe’s Law, the Crimes Amendment (Zoe’s Law) Bill is said to be in response to the stillbirth of a foetus following a car accident. A coalition of women’s groups has warned that the Bill has significant and far-reaching consequences for women’s rights. Women’s Health NSW, Family Planning NSW and the Women’s Electoral Lobby say the NSW government has ignored the issues raised by them.

(2013) 38(4) AltLJ 275


Girlie Gets About

Tammy Pon

Malala addresses UN

Malala Yousafzai’s inspirational address to the United Nations was witnessed by 1000 students from around the world. It was her sixteenth birthday and the courageous girl who was shot in the head by a Taliban sniper said, ‘Let us pick up our books and our pens. They are our most powerful weapons. One child, one teacher, one pen and one book can change the world. Education is the only solution. … The terrorists thought that they would change my aims and stop my ambitions but nothing changed in life, except this: weakness, fear and hopelessness died. Strength, courage and fervor was born’.

(2013) 38(3) AltLJ 189


Girlie Goes 'Down There'

Jenny Taylier and Madge Einer

The Morning After

At last RU486 is not only available to Australian women but also on the PBS list, making it affordable. Thank you, Tanya Plibersek and others whose persistence has made this possible. However, if the government changes later this year, Girlie wonders what Tony Abbott will do about this. In recent times he has been trying hard to give voters the impression he has moved away from his intolerance towards reproductive choices for women. It remains to be seen what will happen if he becomes Prime Minister.

(2013) 38(2) AltLJ 126


Girlie races into the new legal 
year with a hop, step and jump

Fanny First

Abortion inaction

Roe v Wade, the famous United States Supreme Court decision on abortion, is now 40 years old. But what a messy 40 years it has been for women. Many US States NOW have the most repressive anti-abortion laws in their history.  Miriam Claire published The Abortion Dilemma: Personal Views on a Public Issue in 1995, and a 2013 updated version notes that in some US states ‘abortion is now not an option … because threats and legal penalties against doctors who perform abortions have made the business of providing safe, legal abortions to women unsafe for medical practitioners and their support staff.’ (See also Miriam Claire, ‘A Woman’s Right to Choose Still a Public Battlefield’, The Age, 22 January 2013.)

(2013) 38(1) AltLJ 53


Girlie wraps up 2012

Hannah Kah, Mary Christmas and Issie Lamb

At last

Saudi female lawyers will finally be allowed to obtain practise licences. A Saudi newspaper has reported that on 8 October 2012 the Saudi Ministry of Justice gave its approval. The approval followed a series of discussions and consultations with experts and relevant bodies, both legal and religious, according to the Saudi al-Riyadh daily. Women with law degrees in Saudi Arabia have been allowed to work as legal consultants in companies or banks, but could not officially represent clients in court. They were, however, permitted to act as ‘representatives’ but were still not considered lawyers. The absence of a law licence also meant women could not open law firms in their own names.

(2012) 37(4) AltLJ 281


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