Inquiry into Drug Law Reform

Liberty Victoria welcomes the opportunity to contribute to this timely inquiry. Clear evidence from other jurisdictions, the medical profession and respected human rights organisations demonstrates that drug reform is a health and human rights issue that demands immediate attention.  We believe that now is the time for a paradigm shift Victoria. 

Our submission is divided into three parts:

A Legislated Spent Convictions Scheme for Victoria: Recommendations for Reform

The introduction of laws to govern how convictions are removed from a criminal record is a simple and straightforward reform. All other jurisdictions in Australia have laws that provide for the removal of certain less serious convictions from the records of past offenders who have not gone on to reoffend. This goes to the heart of our criminal justice system. Offenders should be punished appropriately but they should also be given the opportunity to actively contribute to society once that punishment has been delivered.

Victorians deserve a fair go

Liberty Victoria’s Rights Advocacy Project has launched a report on the unfair rules around disclosure of old criminal convictions in Victoria. The report 'A Legislated Spent Convictions Scheme for Victoria: Recommendations for Reform' was launched at a Law Week event this week, where academics, lawyers and politicians discuss how we can change the rules to keep the whole community safer, and give people the second chance they deserve.

Dramatic rise in the personal, “God-like” legal powers of Immigration Minister, new report finds

Liberty Victoria’s Rights Advocacy Project (‘RAP’) today released a new report revealing the dramatic rise in the personal discretions and legal powers of the Immigration Minister.

One of the report’s authors, Lauren Bull, said that RAP’s investigations had found that despite previous Immigration Ministers warning that the Minister already held too much unchecked personal discretion, there was an alarming trend towards further expanding the Minister’s personal powers and removing checks and balances.

Gillian Triggs takes out free speech award

The retiring President of the Australian Human Rights Commission, Professor Gillian Triggs, is to be honoured for her fearless work in pursuit of people’s rights.

She is the recipient of the nation’s top free speech prize the Voltaire Award.

Given by Australia’s oldest human rights organisation, Liberty Victoria, it celebrates those who speak out, write, campaign, stand against authoritarianism or expose through whistle-blowing. Often award winners have gone beyond the call of duty or office and refused to be cowed or silenced.

Independent National Security Legislation Monitor’s Statutory Deadline Review

Liberty Victoria has made a submission to the Independent National Security Legislation Monitor’s (INSLM) Statutory Deadline Review of:

Crimes Legislation Amendment (Public Order) Bill 2017

  1. The Crimes Legislation Amendment (Public Order) Bill 2017 (the Bill) is intended to address concerns regarding violence at public demonstrations, in particular the commission of violent acts while wearing masks.
  2. Liberty Victoria provided a preliminary comment on public calls for laws to prohibit wearing a mask at protests, and for potentially mandatory or prescriptive sentences for those that commit violent acts at protests.

Inquiry into Youth Justice Centres in Victoria

Government should reject calls for a more punitive approach to child prisoners, and should focus on the promotion of the rehabilitation of children and the removal of children from detention.

'Swift and Certain’ Sentencing Of Family Violence Offenders In Victoria

Liberty Victoria is mindful of the profound, pervasive, often catastrophic impacts of family violence in Victoria, and the need to develop holistic and sustained strategies to prevent and reduce family violence. Our organisation’s core concern is maintaining a society in which people’s rights, freedoms and dignity are valued and protected.