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

Male Business Leaders Need to Support Women's Empowerment

On March 10-11 at The United Nations, leaders from government, civil society and the business sector convened to discuss how business can be a force for change in advancing gender equality across the globe. This call for business to play a...
Tuesday 31 March 2015
Elizabeth Broderick, Sex Discrimination Commissioner

Gillian Triggs on Malcolm Fraser: 'He tried to make Australia a better and...

Malcolm Fraser was a towering figure in human rights.  I greatly respected his compassion and respect for all human beings.I have known Malcolm for 40 years. He was always generous with his time and demonstrated a great ability to resolve difficult...
Friday 20 March 2015
Professor Gillian Triggs, President

Close the gap, not the communities

The decisions being made about remote communities are highly damaging and a breach of inherent rights. On Close the Gap Day we urge the Government to re-engage with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, write Mick Gooda and Kirstie Parker....
Thursday 19 March 2015
Mick Gooda, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner

The Australian government's data retention scheme is not 1984 come to life

Data retention, without strong checks and penalties for misuse, could pose a serious risk to privacy – but the government is being constructive.The compulsory two-year retention of metadata needs stronger safeguards.Last week the federal government...
Friday 13 March 2015
Tim Wilson, Human Rights Commissioner

Children the victims of AMF’s anti-gay marriage adverstisement

THE running of the Australian Marriage Forum (AMF) advertisement on television last weekend to coincide with the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade can only be described as pointless and cruel. This anti-same sex marriage message deliberately...
Friday 13 March 2015
Megan Mitchell, Children's Commissioner

Australian Marriage Forum ad might be distasteful but it should have been...

On Sunday night, the Australian Marriage Forum (AMF) broadcast an advertisement against marriage for same-sex couples. The advertisement was scheduled to be broadcast on Channels 7, 9 and SBS.The AMF advertisement argued that same-sex couples should...
Wednesday 11 March 2015
Tim Wilson, Human Rights Commissioner