Australian Human Rights Commission Free & Equal Anti-Discrimination Law Reform Discussion Paper

Publication date:
8 November 2019
Resource type:

PIAC’s submission to the Australian Human Rights Commission’s (AHRC) Free & Equal Anti-Discrimination Law Reform Discussion Paper contains three main parts.

First, it recommends urgent changes to the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth), including amendments to reasonable adjustments provisions to address problems that arose in the Sklavos decision. It also discusses issues around insurance exemptions, and disability transport standards.

Second, it recommends several changes to better protect LGBTI Australians against discrimination, including:

  • Replacing ‘intersex status’ with ‘sex characteristics’ in the Sex Discrimination Act 1984 (Cth),
  • Adding gender identity and sex characteristics as protected attributes in the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth), and
  • Reforming religious exceptions in the Sex Discrimination Act, using the approach adopted in the Anti-Discrimination Act 1998 (Tas) as a best-practice model.

Third, it makes a series of other recommendations, including expanding protected attributes more broadly to include social/housing status, victims or survivors of family or domestic violence, and religious belief (including lack of religious belief), and expanding vilification protections, as well as changes to standing, costs and the time-frame for lodging complaints with the AHRC.

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Towards Truth is a partnership between PIAC and UNSW Indigenous Law Centre.
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