PODCAST: Ashley talks to citizenship expert Kim Rubenstein

Professor Rubenstein tells Ashley how Australian politicians and others have dropped the ball over restrictions on Australian trying to return home

IT USED TO be that an Australian passport and an airplane ticket were good enough to ensure that every Australian citizen could get in and out of the country.


Not anymore. So many Australians know of citizens – family, friends and colleagues – who are either stranded overseas because of COVID or had to jimp through hoops to make it back.

It was a problem that citizenship experts such as Professor Kim Rubenstein saw coming well before the pandemic and in the latest Lap of Caulfield Park podcast, she tells Ashley Browne about how Australian politicians and others have dropped the ball.

In a wide ranging conversation, Professor Rubenstein discusses her work as a lawyer, academic and activist as well as her new book, The Vetting of Wisdom, which was published this week and tells the of Joan Montgomery, the revered former principal of PLC, one of Melbourne’s leading schools, who was forced to leave her position.

The story resonated with Professor Rubenstein, who was a school captain at PLC and one of Montgomery’s students and for the last 28 years, this has been a passion project of hers. She tells the podcast of her motivation for writing the book and what it was like to delve into the politics of the Presbyterian Church.

Also in the podcast, she discusses her work with the 50/50 by 2030 Foundation and paints a rosy picture of the small but richly diverse Jewish community in Canberra, whose model of co-operation might teach a lesson to some of the larger communities in Australia.

Lap of Caulfield Park is presented by Plus 61J in conjunction with the Jewish Museum of Australia. Subscribe through Apple Podcasts, Spotify or your favourite podcast provider.