Politicians and public servants could soon be forced to consider human rights in policy-making and decision-making processes if a push to establish human rights laws is adopted by the Albanese Government. Source: Canberra Times.
The Australian Human Rights Commission has launched its proposed model for a Human Rights Act, which would ensure legal protections for basic rights and offer avenues for redress when those rights are breached.
Australia remains the only liberal democracy in the world without an act or charter of rights at the national level.
Commission president Rosalind Croucher put forward the model at an event last night, which would allow Australians to seek solutions to rights breaches through conciliation or administrative appeal and, if required, through the Federal Court.
“The starting point for a national Human Rights Act is to recognise that everyone’s rights matter, all of the time,” Professor Croucher said.
“We should expect that Parliament and public servants will actively consider the human rights impacts of decisions they make.
“A Human Rights Act is the central missing piece of government accountability in Australia. It will increase transparency and trust in governments by requiring them to fully consider human rights in their decisions, laws, policies, and practice.”
A discussion paper published by the commission yesterday outlines the human rights challenges presented throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 380-page paper will be followed by a final report to be tabled in Parliament later this year.
Australian Human Rights Commission president Rosalind Croucher proposes Human Rights Act model (By Sarah Basford Canales, Canberra Times)