Submission on Draft Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Act 2012

A4's Management Group endorsed the submission that Bob Buckley sent (originally as a personal submission) to the Senate Inquiry into the draft Act.

The draft legislation aims to consolidate a number of existing acts.

Bob Buckley's submission (click here to download it or get it from submission 573 on the page http://aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Senate_Committees?ur...) commend the draft on its Objective "to give effect to Australia’s obligations under the human rights instruments and the ILO instruments".

Mr Buckley's submission also raises concerns about the proposed legislation, including:

  • not delivering on its commendable human rights Objective (see above);
  • to our knowledge, no one ever won a discrimination complaint against a government agency (neither Commonwealth nor state/territory). This is a serious problem with the Australian legal system since such an outcome is a) unlikely (it suggests that all agencies always conduct themselves without prejudice or discrimination and lawyers consistently misjudge these matters), and b) the proposed legislation seems unlikely to change this outcome; and
  • failure to protect all vulnerable people from vilification and harassment.

Many of the submissions to the Inquiry suggest the proposed law will limit free speech and religious freedoms.

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PDF icon HRADA 2012 submission.pdf128 KB