Liberty Victoria is essentially supportive of the reforms contained in the Bill. We note that there has been a significant expansion in the powers and activities of Australia’s national security and intelligence organisations over the past two decades, without a corresponding increase in review or scrutiny of such bodies.
Liberty Victoria is strongly opposed to the amendments to the Corrections Act 1986 (Vic) (the Act) made by the Corrections Amendment (Parole) Act 2018 (Vic) (the amendments).
The effective imposition of imprisonment for life without parole constitutes cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment and breaches fundamental human rights norms. People can rehabilitate. These amendments deny a class of offenders the basic human dignity of mercy, individual justice, and rehabilitation.
In summary, the Bill introduces an important change to the way in which family law proceedings are conducted, so that there is no undue stress and trauma caused to victims of family violence. However, the Bill does not adequately ensure that legal representation will be guaranteed and in its current form does not ensure that the right to a fair trial is not unduly restricted. Liberty Victoria submits that the Bill should not be passed without legislative protections which ensure that parties will be legally represented in circumstances where personal cross-examination is prohibited.
Liberty Victoria strongly opposes the abolition of de novo appeals. These significant reforms have been introduced without evidence-based support. The last investigation in 2006 by the Law Reform Committee of the Parliament of Victoria recommended that de novo appeals should be retained. Since then, there has been no further research by Parliament or the Victorian Law Reform Commission into the de novo appeals system.
Submitted by Liberty Victoria on Wed, 07/25/2018 - 14:24
Over 150 free speech advocates are calling on Opposition Leader Bill Shorten to stop the offshore detention of asylum seekers. A letter has gone from those attending the nation’s top free speech awards, run by the rights body, Liberty Victoria.
The advocates want the ALP to change their policy to support the full resettlement in Australia of asylum seekers on Manus Island and Nauru.
Submitted by Liberty Victoria on Tue, 07/24/2018 - 14:26
A leading human rights group today joined a chorus of condemnation of new State Government laws that sharply cut the amount of time people may spend together.
Under the laws children as young as 14 may be given orders not to associate with others (Liberty Victoria notes that Police Minister Lisa Neville this morning discussed the potential application of the laws to a child as young as 11).
Liberty Victoria opposes these laws, as do the Federation of Community Legal Centres, Human Rights Law Centre, Victorian Council of Social Service and Fitzroy Legal Service.
Liberty Victoria fully supports constitutional recognition of Australia's First Peoples, in the form set out in the Uluru Statement from the Heart: a constitutionally enshrined, First Nations Voice to the Parliament, and a Makarrata Commission, which will supervise a process of agreement-making and truth-telling. This model has been developed by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples - the very peoples who are to be recognised in our founding document.
This Bill proposes to expand the detention and supervision order regime under the Serious Sex Offenders (Detention and Supervision) Act 2009 (Vic) to non-sexual violence offences. Under the scheme, offenders can be detained or subject to onerous supervision orders at the conclusion of their sentence. Liberty Victoria opposes the expansion of the scheme. Terms of imprisonment are imposed by an independent judicial officer having regard to all sentencing considerations, including the risk of reoffending and the need for community protection.
Submitted by Liberty Victoria on Thu, 04/12/2018 - 23:20
New mandatory sentencing laws will not make our communities safer, the human rights group Liberty Victoria warned today. The comments were made in response to Wednesday’s announcement that the Andrews government will expand the number of offences for which judges and magistrates will be banned from using Community Correction Orders (CCOs).