The 2005 Medal and Awards presentation ceremony was held on 9 December 2005 at a luncheon at the Sheraton on the Park hotel in Sydney. The Human Rights Day address was delivered by Commission President, the Hon. John von Doussa QC and Julie McCrossin was the MC.

The judges were: Jonathan Biggins, Justice Catherine Branson, David Cooper, Maurice Corcoran, Nicholas Cowdery QC, Eva Cox, Morag Fraser, Jackie Huggins, Ian Kiernan, Justice Ruth McColl, Sandy McCutcheon, David Marr, Kathryn Millard, Andy Nehl, Natalie O'Brien, Cleonie Quayle, Paul Sheehan, Laura Tingle and Andrew Urban.

human rights medal

Winner: Kevin Cocks

Kevin Cocks, described as the absolute epitome of the quiet achiever, for his lifelong dedication to disability rights and social justice issues. David Vadiveloo was highly commended.

law award - sponsored by the law council of australia

Winner: PILCH Homeless Persons' Legal Clinic

PILCH HomelessPersons' Legal Clinic for providing free legal assistance to and advocacy on behalf of homeless people. Devoted human rights advocate Simon Rice OAM was highly commended.

community award (individual)

Winner: David Vadiveloo

for his work at the grass roots level assisting Indigenous communities to communicate their issues to the global stage. Kerrianne Cox and Jane Rowe were highly commended.

community award (organisation)

Winner: Chilout (Children out of Detention)

Award for their campaign to have children removed from immigration detention. Streetwize Communications, The Immigration Advice and Rights Centre, and the NSW Disability Discrimination Legal Centre Inc.were highly commended. The Community Award category was sponsored by SBS Radio.

arts non-fiction award

Joint Winner: Associate Professor Christopher Newell

Joint Winner: Dr Gerard Goggin's Disability in Australia: Exposing a Social Apartheid

which explored a hidden blight in our society – the treatment of people with disabilities. Following them Home: The fate of the returned asylum seekers by David Corlett was highly commended.

television award

Winner:Vivian Solon , ABC TV's Lateline -Margot O'Neill, Tom Iggulden, Hamish Fitzsimmons, Lisa Millar and Tony Jones

ABC TV’s 4 Corners  Out of Mind’ by Matthew Carney, Peter Cronau and Sandra Harvey, and ‘The Pilot’s Funeral’ by ABC TV’s Trevor Graham, Rose Hesp and Denise Haslem were highly commended.

print media award

Winner: Andra Jackson , The Age

won the Print Media Award for Mystery Detained Woman an Australia, stories which resulted in the identification of Cornelia Rau. Michael Gordon (The Age) Nauru features and Russell Skelton (The Age) Papunya – Our Third World Shame were highly commended.

radio award

Winner: Locked in with Friends, ABC Radio National's Street Stories - Cath Dwyer

a documentary about a young man Chris Nolan, who lives in an aged care nursing home, and the family and friends who support him. When Nolan was 28 years old he suffered a hypoxic brain injury which left him in a 'locked in' state - unable to speak, see or move, but still able to hear and understand. The program dealt with the profound effects of his injury - on him and those around him.

Described by the judges "as an incredibly moving, challenging and brilliant piece of radio", it managed to deal with a sensitive issue in an engaging and uplifting way.