Vale Barbara Holborow

Barbara Holborow, Former New South Wales children’s magistrate, has died aged 81.

Barbara has been a champion for children’s rights for many years and recently had been awarded NSW Senior Australian of the Year 2012. This is an extract from the Australian of the Year website:

Barbara’s philosophy is that ‘every child is everybody’s responsibility.’ As a magistrate, she was instrumental in setting up free legal aid for children in NSW, a care court to deal with cases of neglect and a special jail for first-time offenders aged 18 to 25. She allowed television cameras into her court, believing that an open and transparent process would help reform the system.

Barbara Holborow, Irene Hancock, Sev Ozdowski
at AWCH 2002 Conference

Since her retirement from the bench in 1994 she has continued to defend the rights of children. Over the years, many foster children have come under her care and while working at a refuge she met a young Aboriginal boy named Jacob who she later adopted.

Barbara has written three books on her experiences with children and, at the age of 81, continues her fearless crusading, lobbying government and garnering media attention.

Barbara was an inspirational keynote speaker at AWCH 2002 conference Healthy Justice for Children.


Children’s champion Barbara Holborow dies
Magistrate Barbara Holborow dies