Is jail the answer for Australian kids?

This year around 900 children and young people will spend Christmas in jail.More than 5 per cent of this population are between 10 and 12 years old and 74 per cent of this age group are Indigenous. Most have been charged or convicted with petty...
Thursday 22 December 2016
Megan Mitchell, Children's Commissioner

Listen to us: we know what we need

Decades of reports and inquiries have largely echoed what Indigenous leaders have long asked for: we want Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to be at the heart of any reform agenda involving our people, says Robynne Quiggin.The 2016...
Wednesday 7 December 2016
Ms Robynne Quiggin, Deputy Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner

There's no excuse for child abuse

AuthorMegan Mitchell, National Children's CommissionerEarlier this year I visited the Don Dale Youth Detention Centre in Darwin, along with a number of other centres where children are detained across the country. The purpose of the visits was to...
Friday 2 December 2016

Marriage equality: a return to substance over process

The debate on marriage equality this year has focussed on process: should parliament or the people vote on this issue? We now have a welcome move to substance.Six weeks ago, Attorney-General George Brandis got the ball rolling by releasing an...
Thursday 1 December 2016
Mr Edward Santow, Human Rights Commissioner

There isn't a 'silent majority' of racists in Australia

These are challenging times for race relations. In the United States, just a fortnight after the election of Donald Trump, there are already numerous reports of hate attacks on the rise. A similar trend was reported earlier this year following the...
Monday 28 November 2016
Dr Tim Soutphommasane, Race Discrimination Commissioner

Striking the right balance on free speech

A former Human Rights Commissioner, Sev Ozdowski, has asked whether the Racial Discrimination Act impinges on freedom of expression under international law.It’s an interesting question with a clear answer. International law offers a sensible pathway...
Wednesday 23 November 2016
Mr Edward Santow, Human Rights Commissioner

The NDIS: delivering results, delivering equality and even delivering your...

Getting a morning coffee on the way to work is a ritual many of us take for granted.   Not Jeremy, who is a young man with a communication disability.  The thought of not only being able to order coffee, but run a business, was a pipe dream.  Until...
Thursday 6 October 2016
Mr Alastair McEwin, Disability Discrimination Commissioner

We can't eradicate racism but telling its targets to grin and bear it isn...

Debates about racism in Australia are always contentious, more so when they involve our political representatives.However, we should be forthright in speaking out against appeals to fear. We should resist attempts to divide Australians according to...
Wednesday 21 September 2016
Dr Tim Soutphommasane, Race Discrimination Commissioner

Indigenous injustice: it beggars belief that so much evidence was ignored

I was shocked but not surprised by the ABC’s Four Corners revelations last Monday night. Incontrovertible CCTV evidence of Aboriginal children subject to demeaning, debilitating and dehumanizing behavior has galvanized the Australian community and...
Tuesday 2 August 2016
Professor Gillian Triggs, President

Diversity is more than just souvlaki and dragon dance

Australia is often described as a multicultural success story. Yet our cultural diversity isn’t yet reflected in the ranks of leadership within society. The ethnic and cultural default of leadership in Australia remains Anglo-Celtic. Unfortunately,...
Friday 29 July 2016
Dr Tim Soutphommasane, Race Discrimination Commissioner