Dr Layton is a former Supreme Court Judge who has also served as a Judge in the South Australian Industrial Court and Commission and as a Deputy President of the Commonwealth Administrative Appeals Tribunal. Dr Layton was also a member (and later the chair) of the Committee of Experts on Application of Conventions of the International Labour Office (ILO) in Geneva (1993-2008) and has since served as a consultant for the ILO providing judicial and general legal training on international labour standards in a number of countries. She has also worked as a consultant for the Asia Development Bank on a gender development poverty reduction project for women in Kazakhstan, Cambodia and the Philippines. Dr Layton was also involved in conducting workshops on Advocacy for law students at Delhi University and with the Bar in Delhi in 2013.
She is Chair of the Advisory Council for the University of South Australia’s Australian Centre for Child Protection. Dr Layton is Patron of a number of organisations including the Women’s Legal Services SA and the Australian Migrant Resource Centre. Her long involvement and commitment to human rights and social justice has seen her work as Chair of the South Australian Sex Discrimination Board and the Human Rights Committee of the Law Society of South Australia.
The specific connection with children and community was sparked between 2002-2003 through the appointment by the State Government to conduct a review of child protection and prepare a Government Plan to protect children from abuse; “Our Best Investment” was the outcome. This work and report included a specific focus on inter-agency co-ordination and relationships, family and youth services, parenting services; young people under guardianship of the Minister, adolescents at risk, children and young people with disabilities and Aboriginal issues.
Dr Layton has also published extensively on topics relating to judicial and tribunal practice, health and ethics, and international labour standards and human rights. She has also been involved in judicial and legal education training programs and workshops, internationally and nationally for some years.