Australia is now the only major Anglophone country that has not adopted a Bill of Rights. Since 1982 Canada, New Zealand and the UK have all adopted either constitutional or statutory bills of rights. Australia, however, continues to rely on common law, statutes dealing with specific issues such as racial and sexual discrimination, a generally tolerant society and a vibrant democracy. This book focuses on the protection of human rights in Australia and includes international perspectives for the purpose of comparison and it provides an examination of how well Australian institutions, governments, legislatures, courts and tribunals have performed in protecting human rights in the absence of a Bill of Rights.
Contents: Introduction, Jeffrey Goldsworthy. Institutional Performance: Australian exceptionalism: rights protection without a Bill of Rights, Brian Galligan and F.L. (Ted) Morton; The performance of Australian legislatures in protecting rights, John Uhr; Improving legislative scrutiny of proposed laws to enhance basic rights, parliamentary democracy, and the quality of law-making, Bryan Horrigan; The performance of administrative law in protecting rights, Robin Creyke; Australia's constitutional rights and the problem of interpretive disagreement, Adrienne Stone. Particular Human Rights Issues: Rights and citizenship in law and public discourse, Helen Irving; Chained to the past: the psychological Terra Nullius of Australia's public institutions, Megan Davis; Constitutional property rights in Australia: reconciling individual rights and the common good, Simon Evans. International Perspectives: American judicial review in perspective, Robert Nagel; The unfulfilled promise of dialogic constitutionalism: judicial-legislative relationships under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Christopher Manfredi. Strategies for Institutional Reform: A modest (but robust) defence of statutory bills of rights, Jeremy Webber; Australia's first Bill of Rights: the Australian Capital Territory's Human Rights Act, Hilary Charlesworth; An Australian Rights Council, George Winterton; Human rights strategies: an Australian alternative, Tom Campbell. Index.