The Redfern Activists

The Redfern Activists

A group of Redfern Activists that included Paul and Isabel Coe, Gary Foley, Billy and Lyn Craigie, Gary Williams, Bronwyn Penrith, Tony Coorey, and James Wedge, started monitoring and recording the everyday experience of police brutality and harrassment.

They approached white lawyers, trade union groups and university students who had no idea about the scale of discrimination nor the notorious curfew imposed on Aboriginal people in Redfern.

One of the people they enlisted to the cause was Justice Wootten, the Dean of New South Wales’  Law School and former Supreme Court Judge. In turn, he brought on a number of other prominent lawyers to change State Government police policies towards Aboriginal people around the inner city areas of Sydney.

At night as observers, they  attended local hotels to confirm the claims made by Aboriginal people, and see whether their presence would deter police from unfairly arresting large numbers of Aboriginal people. The claims of abuse and intimidation by police were confirmed.

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