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Human Rights

Common and Statute Law

Statute Law
As we know, statute law is made by parliaments, also known as
Human rights in Australia are BEST PROTECTED by statute law
and there are many pieces of legislation that directly protect human
rights, as well as a few that are less direct.
Statute law is relatively easy to amend which means the protection
of human rights reflect the community standards and beliefs at the

What is the process in which human rights find themselves in

domestic legislation?

Legislation protecting human

Anti Discrimination Act 1975 (cth) and 1977 (NSW)
Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (Cth)
Sex Discrimination Act 1984 (Cth)
Social Security Act 1991 (Cth)
Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth)
Australian Human Rights Commission Act 1986 (Cth)
Occupational Health and Safety Act 2000 (NSW) - WHS
Public Health Act 1991 (NSW)
Children (Care and Protection) Act 1997 (NSW)
Family Law Act 1975 (Cth)
Marriage Act 1961 (Cth)
De Facto Relationships Act 1994 (Cth)

Incorporation of Human Rights

into Domestic Law
Statute Law:
Largest forum for rights protection in Australia
Racial Discrimination Act 1975, Sex Discrimination Act 1984, Australian
Human Rights Commission Act 1986, Disability Discrimination Act 1992,
Age Discrimination Act 2004, Anti-Discrimination Act 1977
What are the limitations of statutory protections of human rights?

Anything else?
There are also administrative bodies that operate as part of the
legal process that protect human rights. They are:
Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission (HREOC)
Anti Discrimination Board
State and Federal offices of the Ombudsman
The role of the above bodies in to ensure the pieces of
legislation on the previous slide are put into practice and
maintained at a high standard.

Common Law
Common law does NOT offer complete protection of human rights
due to the changing nature of the law making process.
Common law is not fixed and can be overridden by statute law at
any time.
Common law cannot be relied upon to develop new rights or new
ways to protect rights as judgements are only made on a case by
case basis.

Common Law:
Common law (the decisions of the courts)has evolved over the centuries,
independent of government, and carries the power to protect many
human rights
Presumption of innocence; burden of proof and the right to a fair trial
are not contained within legislation but are interpreted into our legal
system by the courts.
Explain how the anti terrorism laws passed by government after
September 11 demonstrate the limitations of common law protections
of rights
Explain another limitation of common law rights protection