Lecretia Seales Memorial Lecture in Law Reform

The Lecretia Seales Lecture is given in honour of lawyer and law reform advocate Lecretia Seales.

Lecretia Seales was a New Zealand lawyer who, upon suffering a brain tumour and enduring treatments for it, became an advocate of physician-assisted dying

In 2015, Lecretia went to the high court to seek a ruling that would allow a doctor to assist her to die with her consent. Her court case initiated a national debate and helped galvanise a parliamentary inquiry into assisted dying.

The End-of-Life Choice Act was passed in November 2019, and a public referendum secured support for the Act which was implemented in 2020.

The lecture is generously supported by Lecretia’s family and friends.

Lecretia Seales Lecture 2023

Brendan Sydes

The Lecretia Seales Lecture was delivered by Brendan Sydes in 2023, an Australian environmental lawyer, law reform advocate and Senior Fellow at Melbourne Law School.

Brendan discussed the development of national environmental law in Australia, exploring how the Australian government has committed to stronger integration of Indigenous governance—an area where Australia has much to learn from New Zealand.

Watch Brendan Sydes "A Long and Winding Journey—Development of a National Environmental Law in Australia"

Past lectures have been given by:

  • 2022: Chlöe Swarbrick "In the Legal and Political Weeds: The 2020 Cannabis Referendum and Beyond" - watch here
  • 2021: Dr Warren Young "Trials, Tribulations and Occasional Triumphs of Criminal Justice Reform" - watch here
  • 2020: Panel discussion on "Seales v Attorney General and subsequent law reform" - watch here
  • 2019: Frances M Kamm "Assisting Someone To End Their Life: For and Against"
  • 2018: Julian Gardner and Tricia Malowney "Assisted Dying In Practice—Lessons from Australia's Victorian Inquiry"
  • 2017: Professor J Douglas Sellman "Law, Liquor and Love"
  • 2016: Sir Geoffrey Palmer "Law and Life"