ALA commends Attorney-General for not rushing anti-discrim bill

22nd Mar 2013

The Australian Lawyers Alliance today commended the Federal Attorney General, Mark Dreyfus, for not rushing consideration of the anti-discrimination bill or the reading and deliberation of submissions pertaining to the Bill, which may have resulted in substandard legislation.

Australian Lawyers Alliance National President, Tony Kerin said examples of important national legislation hastily pushed through parliament recently included, Stronger Futures and National Disability Insurance Scheme legislation (passed just this week).

“Both these pieces of legislation had outstanding rights issues that were not properly examined because of the political push to pass legislation in the name of expediency. It is not appropriate to adopt processes that regularly see submissions on draft laws required within very short time frames. This leads to a risk our laws will not then be of an appropriate standard,” Mr Kerin said.

“It is commendable that the Attorney-General, is adopting a more, principled approach that allows for the full implications and magnitude of draft laws to be properly considered.

"Hopefully, this style of approach becomes the norm rather than rushing laws through parliament at the expense of adequate and just legislation,” he said.

Mr Kerin said the ALA looked forward to engaging with the Attorney-General on draft laws in future to help provide constructive comment so that the balance between the rights of individuals and just laws eventuates.

“As first law officer of the Commonwealth and despite the self evident political pressures at this time, it is pleasing to see the Attorney calmly considering the full implications of a rushed response,” Mr Kerin said.

Tags: NDIS Discrimination Stronger Futures in the Northern Territory