NSWCCL has made a submission to the Legislative Council Standing Committee's inquiry into Racial vilification law in NSW.
Secretary Stephen Blanks called for reform of the laws, stating that the bar for prosecutions has been set too high, as shown by the absence of any prosecutions.
NSWCCL believes that the sections under review have failed to legitimately criminalise serious racial vilification. Further, it is possible to reform the legislation to be more effective, whilst also maintaining the right to free speech.Read more
NSWCCL has made a submission to Greens MPs in relation to their invitation to comment on the draft Human Tissue Amendment (Trafficking in Human Organs) Bill and the accompanying discussion paper.
"We have considered the clauses carefully. We cannot support the proposed legislation.
...CCL holds therefore that legislation which is to operate extra-jurisdictionally outside Australia should be confined to matters where the United Nations has mandated such extrajurisdictional operation in an international treaty."
NSWCCL has made a submission to the NSW Ombudsman concerning their review of the Summary Offences Act 1988 Section 9: Continuation of intoxicated and disorderly behaviour following a move on direction.
The submission expresses concerns regarding the loose definition of 'disorderly' conduct, and the subsequent high degree of discretion granted to police in determining whether behaviour is disorderly.
"In the view of the NSW CCL, behaviour can only be considered 'disorderly' if it disrupts the order of the environment for other people at the time the behaviour takes place or some in the future - behaviour can only be considered 'disorderly' in respect of its impact on other people. It makes no sense for behaviour to be considered disorderly if there is no disorder created for one or more other persons."
NSWCCL has made a submission to the NSW Legislative Council General Purpose Standing Committee no. 4's inquiry into the use of cannabis for medical purposes.
"The NSW Council for Civil Liberties considers that drug use should be addressed as a health issue, not a legal issue.
The use of cannabis for medical purposes should be decriminalised to allow its use if medically qualified people consider that it has health benefits.
The Committee should recommend that a trial of medical cannabis be commenced as soon as practicable."
NSWCCL has made a submission to the inquiry into the Exposure Draft of the Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Bill 2012
NSWCCL supports Australia’s continuing commitment to international human rights instruments, and regards the consolidation of legislation within this Bill as an attempt to meet such obligations.
NSWCCL notes that the operation of the legislation will allow exceptions within areas such as social security, migration and marriage policy. Discrimination in these areas is as arbitrary as anywhere else. NSWCCL opposes these exceptions.
Submission: Inquiry into the Migration and Security Legislation Amendment (Review of Security Assessments) Bill 2012
The New South Wales Council for Civil Liberties has lodged with the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee a submission vehemently opposing the Migration Amendment (Unauthorised Maritime Arrivals and Other Measures) Bill.
NSWCCL has made a submission to the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security (PJCIS) regarding data retention and certificates of immunity for ASIO officers and their contacts
In this submission, NSWCCL addresses the following points:
- Opposing blanket data retention of all Australian's telecommunications metadata
- Response to police submissions concerning possible seeking of additional powers
- Opposing the proposal that ASIO officers be granted certificates of immunity from civil and criminal liability
NSWCCL has made a Submission to the Independent National Security Legislation Monitor
Questions addressed include:
- Is the last resort requirement for a questioning warrant under the ASIO Act too demanding?
- Are the time limits (e.g. 7 days detention for 24 hours questioning) applicable to questioning warrants too long, too short or about right?
- Are the time limits for questioning warrants where interpreters have been used commensurate with the limits applying otherwise?
- Are there sufficient safeguards including judicial review in relation to the surrender or cancellation of passports, in connexion with questi oning warrants?
- Is the abrogation of privilege against self-incrimination under a questioning warrant sufficiently balanced by the use immunity?
- Do the conditions permitting use of lethal force in enforcing a warrant sufficiently clearly require reasonable apprehension of danger to life or limb?
- Are the three several conditions for issuing a questioning and detention warrant stringent enough?
- Should anything be done about doubtful aspects of the constitutional validity of control orders and preventative detention orders under the Criminal Code?
NSWCCL has made a submission to the COAG Review of Australia's Counter-Terrorism Legislation 2012
Although terrorism has been a problem for hundreds of years, the Twin Tours attack in New York and the London and Bali bombings led to the passage of a great deal of legislation which might have been justified if the problem, like a war, could be expe cted to be concluded in a few years. However, it is plain—indeed, it was always plain— that terrorism is not going away. It is time to consider which of the laws we have passed should be kept, which modified, and which should be repealed.
An argument is also made for the need for an Australian Bill of Rights. Without a Bill of Rights, the courts in Australia are unable to protect people from laws that violate fundamental principles of international human rights law; that expose Australians and aliens to risks to their liberties.
NSWCCL has made a submission to the Select Committee on the Partial Defence of Provocation.
The NSW Council for Civil Liberties reiterates its opposition to any significant changes to the existing partial defence in the absence of a compelling case to the contrary.