As indicated in our Briefing last month, the Northern Territory Government is the latest to launch and attack on religious freedom with the release of proposed amendments to discrimination laws.
This follows the release of a Discussion Paper as the initial stage of their review in September 2017.
CSA provided a submission later that year in response.
Our submission on the Exposure Draft: Anti-Discrimination Amendment Bill 2022 (NT) was lodged earlier today.
Given the significant delays since the initial Discussion Paper and the significant changes in the discrimination law arena since 2017, particularly in relation to religious freedom, we called on the NT Government to allow a further round of comprehensive consultation prior to proceeding with any legislation.
We also addressed a number of issues within the current Exposure Draft Bill including:
- The lack of balanced objects that recognise the full sweep of human rights.
- The need to include interpretive principles consistent with the recommendations of the Expert Panel Review.
- Ensuring a sensible and justiciable definition of 'sexual orientation'.
- Updating the definition of discrimination to reflect best practice.
- Recalibrating vilification provisions to better balance protections for free speech.
- Protecting religious bodies consistent with contemporary standards
A full copy of the submission can be downloaded below.