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Tribunal case - Strickland v Neptar Jam Pty Ltd

Ms Strickland, from Western Australia, tried to book a room at the East West Motel in Ceduna. But the proprietor refused her because she was Aboriginal.

She made a complaint to the Equal Opportunity Commission. We attempted conciliation between Ms Strickland and the motel proprietor, but no resolution could be reached. The case was referred to the Equal Opportunity Tribunal, but on 18 June 2009 it settled on the court doorstep without a hearing.

The motel proprietor agreed to pay $12 500 in compensation for injury to Ms Strickland's feelings.  He also agreed to attend, with relevant staff, cultural awareness training provided by the University of South Australia. In addition, the proprietor agreed to publish an apology in five newspapers - The Australian, The Advertiser, The West Australian, The Kalgoorlie Miner and The West Coast Sentinel.

These press apologies attracted media attention, and the case was reported further by The Australian and The Kalgoorlie Miner, as well as local radio and television stations.

This case is an example of our race discrimination laws working effectively.

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