Model Litigant Obligations: government’s reputation is ‘rancid’, CLA says

CLA’s submission on a Model Litigant Obligations Bill, proposed by Senator David Leyonhjelm, has at last been published on the website of the Senate committee inquiring into the proposed new law. CLA says the Attorney-General’s Department does not abide by existing law because it fails to actively police, enforce and even simply report annually as it is required by legislation to do on how well, or otherwise, the government is acting as a model litigant. CLA tells the committee the Australian government’s reputation in this area is “rancid”. CLA submission is here: CLA’s and other submissions are here

A law unto themselves, absent model principles

Bill Rowlings* questions how ‘professional’ is the Legal Profession Board of Tasmania. It’s a quango that only recently worked out it needs to abide by model litigant principles, a decade after it was created. And it seems to particularly dislike the right of people to question, scrutinise and dissent.

It is a body which annually seeks funding approval from the Attorney-General and reports formally to the AG each year, making it a quango despite its claims of “independence”. It has 10 statutory functions. Handling complaints is the third listed, but seems to dominate its activities overwhelmingly. Educating the public is one of its activities which appears to have received a very much lower priority.

Quest for ‘security’…at what cost?

Terrorism is a threat, but we should not allow it to be greatly exaggerated:  we acquiesce in the erosion of our liberties and freedoms at our peril, Saul Eslake says. 5 Dec 2017

AFP targets victims, not criminals

If overseas crooks ripped you off for millions, you’d go the AFP, wouldn’t you? MIght not be such a good idea, when the AFP go after victims, not criminals.  12 June 2017

When victims meet perpetrators

Justice in Australia doesn’t come in just one size: a new form, restorative, is starting to reintroduce victims and criminals to each other for better outcomes for both sides. 5 April 2017

Is modern slavery law up to the challenge?

Modern slavery – child labour, prostitutes, oppressive factoies – are rife throughout the world, and Australia, with maybe 5000 slaves,  is not immune. Government is considering a new law here. 2 Mar 2017

Kim killing has other victims

The murder of Kim Jong-nam in KL airport highlights the issue of human trafficking-slavery, with which Australia is about to grapple. Are the women killers, or victims themselves? 1 Mar 2017 

Resist drones, mindless drones

As technology intrudes increasingly into our lives in future, we need to be wary of allowing mindless surveillance and killing devices to have robotic control over life and death. 23 Feb 2017

Bulging prisons? Recidivist politicians

Inmate numbers and prisons keep growing in Australia, even as crime falls worldwide. It’s scandalous that incompetent politicians keep building jails and locking more people up, says Ross Fitzgerald. 2 Jan 2017