Proud young aboriginal lawyer channels adversity into advocacy

Teela Reid began her working life as a teacher, but found herself eventually studying law in an effort to have a stronger impact on the lives of her First Nations people.

Teela saw how the system had such a negative impact on the stolen generation, on stolen wages, and on the oppression of her people.  She believed she had an obligation to empower her people, to fight to give them a voice in the Australian constitution.

In 2010 Reid was selected as Australia’s Indigenous Female Youth Delegate to the United Nations Permanent Forum for Indigenous issues, where she was elected as the secretariat of the World Indigenous Youth Caucus.

Teela was integrally involved with the Uluru Statement of the heart. She is a passionate speaker for having conversations about treaties and truth telling. The unfinished business of not recognising the First Nations people in Australia she has called ‘unfinished business’ and has spoken strongly about the need to have the First Nations people of Australia recognised in the constitution of Australia.

As Teela has pointed out, this land was colonised without a treaty. How do we right this wrong?

Teela has spoken of the systemic racism in our institutions, her people dying at the hands of the state, of their incarcerations at record levels, and the truths that must be told about the treatment of her people.

Teela is determined to channel her anger, her frustration, and her hopes into advocating for her people through conversations that will change the lives of her First Nations people.

At present there is ‘intergenerational trauma’ on her people. She is determined to change the status quo.

Why have we not heard of this young Wiradjuri and Wailwan woman until now? Teela is a powerful voice for her people, leading the fight for constitutional recognition of First Nations People and a fairer world for her people to live within.

Ref: Madeline Hislop. Women’s Agenda

This article has been prepared for information purposes only and is not legal advice. For legal advice regarding your specific circumstances, please contact WR Law directly on (03) 5499 6131 or by email at

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