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Equal Justice Bench Book
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Lady Justice

Justice is frequently depicted as a woman holding a sword and a set of scales and wearing a blindfold ... It is taken today as a representation of the idea of equality before the law which, in its formal sense, is blind to difference including cultural attributes not expressly or impliedly accommodated by the law...

Equality before the law ... is not a guarantee of equal justice. A law of general application may have adverse discriminatory outcomes because of the different circumstances and attributes of those to whom it applies … the idea of “equal justice” may be seen as a more demanding standard than that of formal “equality before the law”.

Chief Justice Robert French AC,
“Equal Justice and Cultural Diversity - The General Meets the Particular” (14 March 2015)


The Department of Justice does not warrant or represent that the information contained within this publication is free from errors or omissions. The Equal Justice Bench Book is considered to be correct at the date of publication; however, changes in circumstances after the time of issue may affect the accuracy and reliability of the information within.

The Department takes no responsibility for and makes no representation or warranty regarding the accuracy, currency, reliability and correctness of any information provided to the Department by third parties.

The Steering Committee, the Department and its employees, consultants and agents will not be liable (including but not limited to liability by reason of negligence) to persons who rely on the information contained in the Equal Justice Bench Book for any loss, damage, cost or expense whether direct, indirect, consequential or special, incurred by, or arising by reason of, any person using or relying on the publication, whether caused by reason of any error, omission or misrepresentation in the publication or otherwise.

The image above depicting Justice is one of the windows in the Supreme Court of Western Australia. The window was designed by Mr H H Estcourt of Messrs. Barnett Bros., Perth. The Supreme Court Building opened in 1903.

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