The AIS and the VIC Bar Association co-hosted their 3rd VIC Bar Iftar Dinner.
The event was well received by the legal professionals as there were judges, barristers and Muslim lawyers sitting with their non-Muslim lawyer colleagues. The evening’s program was compered by VIC Bar’s Diversity and Inclusion champion Astrid Haban-Beer. She set the tone for an informal evening where discussed the role of the law in promoting interfaith and intercultural respect with our panellists Rabea Khan and Rutendo Muchinguri.
The program commenced with the call to prayer and recitation of some verses from the Quran. Mr Darryl Burnett QC welcomed the guest to their ‘home’ as the event was held at the Owen Dixon Chambers. Darryl focussed on the importance of providing a space for everyone in the bar irrespective of their ethnic heritage or religious beliefs and it was great to see the bar have a diverse membership. Ahmet in his welcoming remarks mentioned the role our legal practitioners have in upholding our democracy and that we should move beyond tolerance towards acceptance and understanding of the diverse community we have.
The panellists Rabea and Rutendo in their conversation with Astrid discussed their journey from the early stages of their career to where they are today. Both attributed their skill and confidence was further enhanced by their mentors who gave them the courage to keep pushing the boundaries and not be stifled by any negativity directed towards them. Feeling different was something both panellists embraced and used to their advantage and in turn have been an example for others to follow.
Judge Anna Robertson offered the vote of thanks and mentioned the law has benefitted from this diversity and remarked about her positive encounters with members from the Muslim community by attending a home iftar when she was a barrister.