Thursday 28 October 2010

The Australian Human Rights Commission’s 2009-10 Annual Report has been tabled in federal Parliament and is now available on the website at:

This year’s new look Annual Report describes the diverse range of activities undertaken by the Commission during the 2009-2010 in pursuit of its statutory responsibilities and its vision of an Australian society where human rights are enjoyed by everyone, everywhere, everyday.

These activities include:

  • a range of major projects, reports and inquiries
  • contributions to policy development and legislative review
  • human rights promotion and education, and
  • regional and international activities.

The investigation and conciliation of complaints of alleged discrimination in the areas of sex, race, age and disability is a key function of the Commission. During 2009-2010 the Commission:

  • received 19 968 enquiries - there has been a 76 per cent increase in number of enquiries received over the past five years.
  • received 2 517 complaints, a 12 per cent increase in complaints received in the previous reporting period - there has been an 80 per cent increase in complaints received over the past five years.
  • resolved 50 per cent of finalised complaints through conciliation - this represents a 2 per cent increase on the number of complaints conciliated in the previous reporting period.

The Annual Report features a number of case studies, which provide examples of the type of matters resolved through conciliation. These examples cover a cross-section of issues raised in complaints, such as sexual harassment and age discrimination in employment, racial comments on the internet, discrimination in employment on the grounds of criminal record and disability discrimination in the provision of goods and services.

The Complaint Handling chapter of the Annual Report includes a complete summary of the Commission’s complaint handling activities, including statistics.

Copies of the report can be ordered online at or by calling the Publications Officer at 02 9284 9600 or emailing:

Media contact: Brinsley Marlay - 02 9284 9656 or 0430 366 529