Sunday, 18 March 2012

Charter to stay?

Before the last election it seemed likely that a Baillieu government would repeal parts of the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006, if not scrap it entirely. Recent media coverage suggests neither of those is going to happen.

The reform the government wants to talk about is a requirement that proposed amendments to bills, as well as proposed bills themselves, have Statements of Compatibility. Small beer, when compared with other options that were on the table. The removal of the jurisdiction of the courts to interpret and apply the Charter in their judgments seems to have fallen out of fashion.

The SARC Final Report can be found here.

The Government's response (released last Thursday) is here.

Edit: If you feel strongly that the Charter should be preserved, modified or repealed then please leave a comment explaining why. Several readers already have.


Anonymous said...


iheartbunnies said...

The Charter IS a huge waste of time and should be eliminated. Are we expecting too much of governments that we want them just to do what they said they would do?

martin said...

You have to hand it to the charter-haters.

When it comes in they say it is going to destroy everything. When it doesn't then it is a huge waste of time that must be got rid of.

Does everything have to be all good or all bad?

Concerned Citizen said...

I can think of a lot more useful things for Parliament to be working on than tampering with meta-legislation.

Housing, schools, mental illness, disability services, detox facilities, pollution regulation ...

Cutting ribbons and passing Bills might feel good but it's a poor substitute for getting $$$ where they are needed.

A Concerned Citizen

Anonymous said...

This generation of judiciary are always going to be resistant to a Bill of Rights. It goes against their legal training and experience which tells them that (in Australia, at least) the interests of the State and the individual can be balanced using this marvellous legacy called the common law. Recent decisions of the High Court reflect this conservatism. The real impact of the Charter is only going to be felt once lawyers who have studied under a human rights model take their place at the head of the profession and on the appellate benches. It truly is far too early to assess the impact of such paradigm-shifting change.

damp squid said...

some time back the charter of humanrights was called the Millenium Bug of legislation. i don't know who first said that but i think that is exactly right. lots of people have given themselves jobs off the back of it but the reality is that nothing has changed (or will) because of it