"A lawyer this week will seek "substantial damages" for an Aboriginal woman who believes she was racially vilified in a PhD student's film. The Human Rights and Equal Opportunities Commission accepted a racial hatred complaint filed on behalf of May Dunne, 52, a grandmother from Boulia in central-western Queensland.
In the controversial PhD film Laughing at the Disabled: Creating Comedy that Confronts, Offends and Entertains Mrs Dunne was depicted as an intoxicated Aboriginal woman in a stereotypical manner, the complaint says. The film - renamed Laughing at the Disabled - by Queensland University of Technology PhD student Michael Noonan, showed Mrs Dunne in a hotel and cuddling a disabled man. The commission has named QUT; Mr Noonan; the Spectrum Organisation, which partly funded the film; its chief executive officer, John Hart, who helped film the footage; and Disability Services Queensland as respondents to the complaint....
Ted Watson, an advocate acting on Mrs Dunne's behalf, accused Mr Noonan and QUT of breaking all protocols for conducting research involving Aboriginal people... He said the film also breached recognised protocols for the filming of Aboriginal people.
The High Court of Australia does recognize a right to free speech so I think this claim would fail if it went very far up the judicial tree.
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