The Heenan-Payne Prize was established by WLWA in the early 1990s to encourage the study of feminist legal issues. The prize commemorates the work of two trailblazing women lawyers in Western Australia – Mrs Joan Heenan and Mrs Vivien Payne.

Previous entries for the Prize have covered a wide range of topics including:

  • Single Motherhood, the Sex Discrimination Act, and the Constitution: The decision in McBain v Victoria.
  • Indirect Discrimination and the Sex Discrimination Act 1984: Expectations, Reality and Reform.
  • Female Genital Mutilation & Refugee Law in Australia.
  • Domestic Issues, Global Problems: Child Pornography and Prostitution in Australia and Japan.
  • Don't Beat Yourself Up About It: Deviancy, Morality and the Legal Regulation of Self Harm.
  • The Loss of the Choice to not be Blessed: How should it be Compensated?
  • The Conflicting Interests in regards to Mandatory Partner Notification of HIV-Infection.
  • Domestic Violence and Rules of Evidence in the 21st Century: a critique of "battered woman syndrome" and the use of expert testimony in defensive homicides.

The Prize constitutes a payment of $1000, awarded to a person who is studying, or who was studying in the previous year, for an undergraduate, graduate or post-graduate law degree at a university in Western Australia.


We are currently reviewing the prize criteria and will upload the new criteria when it is available.

Login Form

Current and former members of WLWA can login here to renew, rejoin and access members-only content on our website