Last night, on the 13th of May, the Equal Justice Project held its opening function at the Gus Fisher Gallery. Even though it had been a hectic week for everyone at law school, there was a healthy turnout and members of all Teams mingled with members of the Advisory Board and other volunteers within the organisation.
Directors Rayhan Langdana and Jade Magrath kicked off proceedings by announcing and presenting our annual Equal Justice Award to Dr Andrew Butler of Russell McVeagh in recognition of his pro-bono work – specifically, his work on the Lecretia Seales case that received widespread media coverage last year. Dr Butler graciously accepted the Award, and gave a rousing speech on carrying on a pro-bono ethic throughout one’s legal career.
We also bid farewell to our outgoing patron Sir Ted Thomas, who had been involved with the Equal Justice Project since its inception. Sir Thomas spoke at length on the future of advocacy and social justice at the Law Faculty, and praised the dedication and the work of all those who had gone before us in flying the flag of the organisation. Sir Thomas has been a veritable institution here at the Equal Justice Project, and we will sorely miss his knowledge and unwavering support.
Thank you to all the volunteers, Advisory Board members, and industry professionals who attended our Opening Function. The Equal Justice Project is richer for your support, and we hope to make further strides in spreading awareness and continuing to provide a platform for socio-legal issues that affect all New Zealanders.