Religious freedom and same-sex marriage need not be incompatible

Religious freedom isn’t sufficiently protected in any of the bills before the parliament to allow same-sex couples to marry.Last week the leader of the government in the Senate, Eric Abetz, raised concern that those of faith might suffer legal...
Monday 6 July 2015
Tim Wilson, Human Rights Commissioner

White paper has the potential to improve indigenous lives

The Northern Australia white paper has the potential to be transformative in improving the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples if it increases the respect and value of their property rights and their right to development.The white...
Saturday 27 June 2015
Mick Gooda, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner

White paper has the potential to improve indigenous lives

The Northern Australia white paper has the potential to be transformative in improving the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples if it increases the respect and value of their property rights and their right to development.The white...
Saturday 27 June 2015
Tim Wilson, Human Rights Commissioner

Heard it too many times: I’m not racist, but ...

Is Australia a racist country? During my time as Race Discrimination Commissioner, I have been asked this question constantly. My answers tend to be met with an air of disappointment. Many hope to hear either a simple "yes" or "no". Not everyone is...
Thursday 11 June 2015
Dr Tim Soutphommasane, Race Discrimination Commissioner

I want to hold your hand: LGBTI people have some surprisingly modest aspirations

Visibility remains one of the greatest challenges in tackling the legacy of state-sanctioned discrimination against people on the basis of their sexual orientation, gender identity and intersex status.In the past 30 years we’ve made great strides in...
Thursday 11 June 2015
Tim Wilson, Human Rights Commissioner

Same-sex marriage the ultimate victory for conservatives

That same-sex couples want to marry is a triumph of conservative values, not a threat to them.As the greatest conservative philosopher of the 20th century, Michael Oakeshott, wrote in On Being Conservative, the disposition is to “prefer the familiar...
Saturday 6 June 2015
Tim Wilson, Human Rights Commissioner

Forty years of the Racial Discrimination Act

In October 1975, at a ceremony for the proclamation of the Racial Discrimination Act, then Prime Minister Gough Whitlam described the legislation as ‘a historic measure’, which aimed to ‘entrench new attitudes of tolerance and understanding in the...
Monday 11 May 2015
Dr Tim Soutphommasane, Race Discrimination Commissioner

SBS within its rights to sack Anzac Day tweeter Scott McIntyre

On Sunday morning, SBS sacked its sports commentator, Scott McIntyre, for tweeting ­offensive statements about ­Anzacs and Australia.Decrying McIntyre’s dismissal as a free speech violation and censorship is absurd. McIntyre was free to tweet his...
Tuesday 28 April 2015
Tim Wilson, Human Rights Commissioner

The Racial Discrimination Act at 40

This year marks 40 years since the Commonwealth Parliament enacted the Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (Cth). The legislation did not enjoy an easy birth. In parliamentary debates it was met with fierce resistance from some quarters. One senator...
Tuesday 28 April 2015
Dr Tim Soutphommasane, Race Discrimination Commissioner

The Government, the High Court and the Migration Act

 The long running, if muted, struggle between the High Court of Australia and the Government over refugees recalls a bitter legal battle in the early 17th century. Sir Edward Coke, the first Lord Chief Justice of England, defied King James 1 by...
Friday 10 April 2015
Professor Gillian Triggs, President

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