New Appointments To Migration And Refugee Review Tribunals

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5th December 2008, 03:36pm - Views: 1249
New appointments to Migration and Refugee Review Tribunals

Senator Chris Evans
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for Immigration and Citizenship

The Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Senator Chris Evans, today announced the appointment of five Senior Members to the Migration Review Tribunal (MRT) and the Refugee Review Tribunal (RRT).

"In accordance with the new merit and transparency guidelines on statutory office holders issued by the Australian Public Service Commission, I chose not to exercise my option to simply re-appoint current members," Senator Evans said.

"My decision to test the field, rather than re-appoint current members as has occurred in previous years, opened the process to the best possible candidates and has ensured a fair and robust selection process."

The five successful applicants were unanimously selected through a merit-based process by a panel consisting of Mr Andrew Metcalfe, Secretary of the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (chair), Mr Denis O'Brien, Principal Member of the Tribunals, Ms Lynne Tacy, then Deputy Australian Public Service Commissioner and Ms Carmel Guerra, Chief Executive Officer, Centre for Multicultural Youth.

"Each of the successful applicants demonstrated a strong sense of fairness and understanding of the principles of administrative law and the ability to apply these skills in determining review applications," Senator Evans said.

"I have endorsed the appointment of the five senior members recommended by the
selection panel and look forward to their contribution to the tribunals.

"Their qualifications and experience will ensure the effective delivery of review decisions."

The following people have been appointed to the tribunals: Mr Giles Short, Dr Irene O'Connell, Ms Amanda MacDonald, Ms Linda Kirk and Mr Peter Murphy.

All have been appointed for five years commencing on 1 January 2009 and ending on 31 December 2013. Three of the appointees are currently serving on the tribunals.

Further information about the role of the tribunals can be obtained from the tribunals'

Media Contact: Simon Dowding (02) 6277 7860 or 0411 138 541

Background on the five appointments

Mr Short is presently a Senior Member of the MRT-RRT and has been reappointed to this role. Mr Short holds Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Arts degrees from the Australian National University. He has been with the RRT since 1997 and the MRT since 2006 and has held Senior Member positions since 2003.

Dr O'Connell has been acting as Senior Member MRT-RRT since September 2007. Dr O'Connell holds a Bachelor of Laws degree and a Doctor of Juridical Studies degree from the University of Sydney. She has been a Member of the RRT since 2000 and of the MRT since 2006.

Ms MacDonald holds University of Sydney degrees of Bachelor of Science and Masters of Administrative Law and Policy. Ms MacDonald was acting Senior Member of the MRT-RRT in 2005-2006, is currently a Member of the MRT-RRT, a Senior Member of the Veterans' Review Board and a Member of the Social Security Appeals Tribunal.

Ms Kirk holds a Master of Laws from the University of Cambridge, Bachelor of Laws (Hons) from the University of Adelaide, Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice from the University of South Australia, and Bachelor of Economics from the University of Adelaide. Ms Kirk was admitted to the Supreme Court of South Australia in 1991 and entered on the roll of the High Court of Australia in 1992. Between July 2002 and June 2008, Ms Kirk was an ALP Senator for South Australia and deputy chair of various parliamentary committees (including the Joint Standing Committee on Migration).

Mr Murphy holds Bachelor degrees in Law and Commerce from the University of Melbourne. Mr Murphy is currently Director of Internal Review for the Victorian WorkCover Authority (VWA) as well as Professional Standards/Disciplinary Panel member under the Health Professions Registration Act 2005 of Victoria. Mr Murphy was admitted to the Supreme Court of Victoria in 1980 and entered on the roll of the High Court of Australia in 1986. Mr Murphy has extensive experience as a Member of the MRT-RRT (2003-06) and Social Security Appeals Tribunal (1996-2003).

SOURCE: Minister for Immigration and Citizenship

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