Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #auslaw

Most recents (24)

#RobodebtRC block 4 day 8 everyone has one eye on tomorrow, which given its ms Musolino today, says something. Important to note the briefs on misfeasance aren’t aimed at the minister, but the Secretary as decision maker. Leon stopped it. she needed to.…
Elevating government’s right to chew over things over a pause was best snapped out of. My bet is Robert will stress he was given a a “for noting” brief. Secretary was decision maker at law, comment was indicating future policy approaches etc. #RobodebtRC…
Btw on “legal advice is just legal advice”, I’m confused as to why the minister is reported in one exhibit as demanding legal advice at one point. on onus of proof in like 72 hours. on 30 July 2019. What was troubling him?? Senate inquiry announcement maybe. #RobodebtRC Request for legal advice
Read 133 tweets
We've been working our way through the submissions to the Senate Committee re the NACC.

Leading constitutional law academic Prof Anne Twomey AO is a highlight.

A short thread:

#auspol #auslaw
Prof Twomey is very strong on the importance of public hearings.

She makes the case around several key themes:

1. Trust in the system.

Our courts are open for a reason. If the public cannot see that the allegations have been fairly tested, then it is unlikely to respect and accept the outcome. Why should anti-corruption bodies be different?

Read 9 tweets
One of the major pushbacks to public hearings has been the concept of “reputational damage.”

This thread breaks down this idea in 7 parts


#auspol #auslaw
In all investigations since 2012 which have involved public hearings, the NSW ICAC has made findings of corrupt conduct or serious corrupt conduct against at least one primary suspect.

The sole exception is Operation Spicer, where the High Court case of ICAC v Cunneen & s74BA of the ICAC Act 2015 (NSW) constrained the NSW ICAC in making specific findings of corrupt conduct in the circumstances against the primary suspects.

Read 11 tweets
Public hearings fulfil important functions in corruption investigations. They are not show trials.

A thread on the important role they play:

#auspol #auslaw

Public hearings expose corruption. Exposing corruption to the public is a core objective of integrity commissions, as corruption flourishes in the dark.

Without public hearings, the public would only know that an investigation took place once an investigation report was tabled in Parliament, or a successful prosecution occurred, sometimes years after the fact;

Read 10 tweets
How might Climate Change hurt our Constitution?

First, our Constitutional System is not floating around separate from the Australian Eco-System. It exists within, and is dependent upon, this Eco-System.

If this Eco-System collapses, so too does the Constitutional System built within it.
Second, our Constitutional System is intended to endure for centuries. We think long-term in constitutional law.

So, the question is, what might climate change do to this system in 2100, 2200, 2300 + beyond?
Read 12 tweets
Defamation law changes are needed for freer speech #auslaw #defamation…
This editorial seeks to cover a lot of ground. It acknowledges that there have been recent changes to defamation law as part of the first stage of reforms to the national, uniform defamation laws. It mentions the new requirement of serious harm to reputation.
It is also worth mentioning the new public interest defence, which is as yet untested in the courts. The purpose of these reforms is to exclude trivial claims and to encourage public interest journalism.
Read 13 tweets
We're working through the budget papers and compiling a report. Some of our interesting findings thus far are in the following 🧵:

#auspol #auslaw

The Ombudsman has had a year on year cut of $2.38m (or 4.03%).

What does it do?

It investigates complaints from the public about decisions made by the Federal Government and agencies.

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal has had a year on year cut of $5.65m (or 2.35%).

What does the AAT do?

It investigates the merits of decisions. I.e. If your FOI comes back blank you can go to the AAT to appeal.

Read 6 tweets
Based on what we know about Labor's proposed amendments to the #ReligiousDiscriminationBill, we can say the following:

-they make improvements in a few important areas


-don't redeem what remains, overall, a deeply flawed Bill. #auspol 1/
Improvements incl removing the ability of religious schools to discriminate against students on the basis of sexual orientation & gender identity under the Sex Discrimination Act.

And ensuring the statement of belief clause doesn't remove existing discrimination protections. 2/
However, Labor's amendments do *not* protect LGBT teachers in religious schools under the SDA.

Instead, they will wait for the ALRC to report on this.

Even though this issue is *not* complex, with Tasmania protecting LGBT teachers for two decades, & the ACT since 2019. 3/
Read 20 tweets
Disappointingly, this explainer does not discuss the loophole created by the #ReligiousDiscriminationBill itself, which could continue to see LGBT kids discriminated against 'under the guise of religious views', even if the SDA is fixed. #auslaw #auspol 1/…
This is because the #ReligiousDiscriminationBill allows religious schools to discriminate against students throughout their education.

This falls far short of the best practice approach of Qld, Tasmania, ACT and NT, which limit such discrimination to the point of enrolment. 2/
As a result, a religious school could still punish, or expel, an LGBT student who refuses to publicly affirm 'homosexuality is intrinsically disordered', or 'god created man and women, so trans gender people don't exist.'

The outcome is the same: LGBT kids being mistreated. 3/
Read 4 tweets
*Extremely* disappointing that Liberal MP Angie Bell, a member of the LGBT community, has decided not to stand up for trans and gender diverse children and young people. #trans #auslaw #auspol 1/
Bell is also supporting amendments to the Sex Discrimination Act that allow religious schools to discriminate against lesbian, gay and bisexual students in 1,001 ways other than expulsion. #auspol 2/
And supporting a #ReligiousDiscriminationBill that provides an alternative avenue to discriminate against LGBT kids on the basis of beliefs *about* sexual orientation and gender identity, rather than those things directly (including even, presumably, expelling them). #auspol 3/
Read 4 tweets
The details of the final #ReligiousDiscriminationBill were released a week ago today.

While there has been plenty of discussion about some of the major problems it will cause, I want to focus today on 4 issues which have received comparatively less focus. #auslaw #auspol 1/
1. It will protect at least some religiously-motivated racist comments.

This is because of how broadly the radical and unprecedented 'statement of belief' provisions have been drafted. 2/
Proposed section 12 overrides all other Cth, state & territory anti-discrimination laws.

Including specifically targeting section 17(1) of Tasmania's Anti-Discrimination Act, which prohibits comments that offend, humiliate, insult and ridicule, including on the basis of race. 3/
Read 48 tweets
"Simon Rice, professor of law at USyd says the bill is “bizarrely complicated” because it is “trying to dress up freedom as discrimination” – a sword as a shield, in other words." #auslaw #auspol 1/…
"He warns that by allowing people to make discriminatory statements with impunity, it “emboldens” those inclined to discrimination." 2/
"The overriding of state laws is also likely to reduce the authority of state tribunals, which hear the vast majority of the country’s discrimination claims." 3/
Read 4 tweets
Misleading commentary by Jacinta Collins (of the National Catholic Education Commission) in today's SMH.

The problem with the Religious Discrimination Bill is that it does NOT protect religious belief 'in the same way' as existing attributes. Far from it. #auslaw #auspol 1/
The statement of belief provisions - which protect comments that offend, humiliate, insult & ridicule women, LGBTI people, people with disability & people of minority faiths, in all areas of public life - are radical & unprecedented.

They are not enjoyed by other groups. 2/
While the religious exceptions in the Bill are much, much broader than in any other Cth, state or territory anti-discrimination law, including the broad scope of orgs covered, and the extremely low bar which these orgs need to satisfy in order to discriminate against others. 3/
Read 5 tweets
This is such an excellent and timely piece from @sangpillai on what Australian citizenship means post 9/11: “Post-9/11 Australia has pushed a tradition of exclusion to constitutional extremes”

#constitutionallaw #auslaw
“Ultimately, unable to reach agreement on these things, they simply left citizenship out. The Constitution says nothing direct about what it means to be Australian, when a person is entitled to Australia’s protection, or who can claim to ‘belong’ to Australia.”
“While the framers could not agree on who belonged in the Australian constitutional community, they did express a clear and united desire to be able to comprehensively exclude people who were not of ‘British race’.”
Read 4 tweets
Scott Morrison has said that pubs/cafes having a no jab no entry policy would be lawful under discrimination laws. 💉

As a discrim law expert, I’ve been asked to look into the claim.

It’s rare for me to say this, but: I agree with the PM. A short thread on why👇 #auslaw #auspol
Generally businesses are entitled to set contractual conditions for entry or use of facilities. This is done through contract law - you agree to enter on the basis of certain conditions.

A major limitation on this is that such conditions cannot breach discrimination laws. 🙅🏻‍♀️ /2
A requirement to be vaccinated to enter a pub/restaurant might disadvantage some groups who have a protected attribute - eg disability, religion, political view.

This likely can’t be direct discrimination, as it applies equally to all, but *might* be indirect discrimination.❓/3
Read 9 tweets
#breaking Michaelia Cash to take attorney-general's portfolio from Christian Porter #auspol #auslaw
Social services minister Anne Ruston joins leadership team of the govt, adding "minister for women's safety" to her title #auspol
Karen Andrews is the new MINISTER FOR HOME AFFAIRS (not Stuart Robert). #auspol
Read 9 tweets
Interested to know why previous @thelawcouncil President Arthur Moses was interviewed by #FourCorners to give his view that there should be no #independentinquiry into allegations against Christian Porter #auspol #auslaw…
His view was also being pushed last week by @FinancialReview but others in the legal profession including the more recent president @pollypippin as well as @larissaandelman and @JaneNeedhamSC and @sharonacoutts present a different view @Milliganreports #auspol
Read 13 tweets
Is @FinancialReview part of the #rapeculture problem? In this piece, the @FinancialReview supports the view of a former male @thelawcouncil president over the voices of 3 prominent female lawyers #auslaw #EnoughIsEnough #RuleOfLaw…
AFR view: “The Heydon case was one of inappropriate and unacceptable workplace behaviour. In the case of Mr Porter it is alleged criminality that is at stake. And for that there is only one place: the criminal justice system and the court of law.”
But in this article quoting @JaneNeedhamSC, @larissaandelman and @pollypippin the view is expressed that accountability for conduct is not limited to the criminal jurisdiction and the issue is “about the Attorney-General’s position”.…
Read 9 tweets
There should be an #independentinquiry into rape allegations against Porter. It’s “about having confidence in him and the position he holds” ⁦@JaneNeedhamSC⁩ ⁦@larissaandelman⁩ ⁦@thelawcouncil#auslaw #RuleOfLaw…
#Accountability for conduct is not limited to the criminal jurisdiction “An inquiry may be able to interview other persons that were present. Mr Porter mentioned there were four of them [on the debating team] and that they may have gone out together that evening.”

“He holds the apex position for the legal profession and his conduct – and integrity – must be beyond approach.

“An independent inquiry would be able to look into whether or not he is a fit and proper person to hold the position of Attorney-General in the Cabinet”

Read 6 tweets
MEDIA RELEASE: #ICC ruling on #Palestine paves way for investigation of international crimes, #Australia’s position rejected #auspol #auslaw… via @theACIJ 1/7
The Pre-Trial Chamber of the ICC has ruled that the ICC has jurisdiction over Rome Statute crimes committed in the territory of Palestine. The majority ruling paves the way for an investigation into crimes committed in the occupied Palestinian territory since 2015. 2/7
.@rawanarraf, director of @theACIJ said: “This is a major breakthrough and a huge advance for those all around the world fighting to end impunity for serious international crimes.” 3/7
Read 7 tweets
Christian Porter rejects premise of my question that there is some form of urgency in getting Commonwealth Integrity Commission oversight of pollies. Says there are already 11 public sector anti corruption bodies.
Porter confirms that law enforcement can be investigated for corruption of any kind, but public servants and pollies only 4 crimes.
#auspol #auslaw
Porter says the breadth is "very large" includes abuse of public office. Concedes it's arguable the jurisdiction is broader for law enforcement but says the benefit is there is clarity of what counts as corruption is. #auspol #auslaw
Read 5 tweets
We begin our webinar with Co-Chair of the Uluru Dialogue Leadership Group & Chairperson of the Lowitja Institute Pat Anderson AO. Aunty Pat begins by emphasising the "gift" of the Uluru Statement to the Australian people. #UluruStatement #IndigenousX #auspol #auslaw #NAIDOC2020
Aunty Pat details the long history of reports on constitutional reform over the past decade. Importantly however Indigenous people had not been consoled directly. This was the importance of the Referendum Council #UluruStatement #IndigenousX #auspol #auslaw #NAIDOC2020
Aunty Pat emphasises that this webinar series is about sharing the message of the Uluru Statement and detailing the importance of the sequenced reforms of Voice, Treaty and Truth #UluruStatement #IndigenousX #auspol #auslaw #NAIDOC2020
Read 77 tweets
We were horrified to see that someone experiencing a crisis was treated so violently by police. It doesn’t have to be this way. There are programs in place to appropriately respond to people when they need the community’s help.
People experiencing an acute mental health episode need a health response. The PACER model – a mobile health response comprised of a mental health clinician & police member - has been shown to work by de-escalating incidents and expediting access to appropriate mental health care
PACER also provides an opportunity for underlying legal issues to be addressed. People with mental illness are vulnerable to the experience of legal problems, and are over-represented in the criminal justice system, often as a result of negative interactions with police.
Read 8 tweets
What, if any, defamatory meaning does a 'zipper-mouth face' emoji convey? Gibson DCJ considers the issue here:… #auslaw #defamation
'Defamatory meaning and emoji
Although there has been some academic criticism of judges for referring to sources such as Wikipedia (R Smyth, “What do Trial Judges Cite?”, Evidence from the New South Wales District Court" [2018] UNSWLawJl 9; (2018) 41(1) UNSW Law Journal 211, ...'
'... the nature of modern communications makes consultation of internet dictionaries, such as Emojipedia, a necessary step for the trier of fact who seeks to determine what the ordinary reasonable Twitter reader would make of the use of these symbols.'
Read 7 tweets

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