|Wednesday, 11 May 2011 15:38|
Victoria's new Coalition government has ordered a parliamentary inquiry into the controversial Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities, which was passed by the Labor-controlled parliament in 2006. The Coalition parties opposed the introduction of the Charter of Rights.
UPDATE - The date for submissions to the Inquiry has been EXTENDED to July 1, 2011.
What's wrong with the Charter?
Soon after the Liberal/National Coalition won the election in November 2010, Attorney-General Robert Clark said the Charter was "riddled with flaws" and promised to make changes.
Of course, we would like to see the Charter totally abolished, since it really undermines the law and doesn't add extra protection for citizens. The Sunday Herald Sun editorial pointed out (24/4/2011) that "the Charter has been hijacked by criminals". They noted that "Killers, drug dealers, pedophiles and terrorists have all attempted to use it in long-running legal fights". It is also being used by various activists to promote their causes.
This Inquiry is the first step in rectifying the problems in the Charter. The Charter legislation requires the parliament to review the Charter and its operation after four years. However, we can also give our views on the Charter itself, and express our concerns about having ANY such Charter.
The Inquiry will be conducted by the Victorian parliament's Scrutiny of Acts and Regulations Committee.
The majority of members on the Scrutiny of Acts and Regulations Committee are from the Liberal/National Coalition government.
The terms of reference ask the Committee to inquire into the first four years of operation of the Charter.
The Committee is asked to inquire into "2. the effects of the Charter on
(a) the development and drafting of statutory provisions,
(b) the consideration of statutory provisions by Parliament,
(c) the provision of services, and the performance of other functions, by public authorities,
(d) litigation and the roles and functioning of courts and tribunals and
(e) the availability to Victorians of accessible, just and timely remedies for infringements of rights.
The Committee also has to consider matters referred to in Section 44 (2) of the Charter:
o whether additional rights should be included in the Charter, including economic, social, cultural, children's, women's and self-determination rights.
o whether further provisions should be made regarding public authorities' compliance.
The Committee will investigate the "overall benefits and costs of the charter Act" and "options for reform or improvement of the regime for protecting and upholding rights and responsibilities in Victoria".
Terms of Reference - click here.
Call for Submissions by SARC: click here.
Please make a submission!
ALL the pro-Charter groups will be making submissions, saying the Charter is 'wonderful' and that they want 'additional rights' covered.
It is VITAL that we have our say, opposing the Charter!
Submissions can be posted or sent by email to
|Last Updated on Tuesday, 28 June 2011 12:11|