The Right to a Fair Hearing and Access to Justice: Australia’s Obligations

Submission to the

Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee:

Inquiry into Australia’s Judicial System, the Role of Judges and

Access to Justice



Human Rights Law Resource Centre Ltd

Level 17, 461 Bourke Street

Melbourne VIC 3000

Maryam Minai, Helen Conrad and Philip Lynch

Human Rights Law Resource Centre Ltd

Level 17, 461 Bourke Street

Melbourne VIC 3000

T: + 61 3 8636 4450

F: + 61 3 8636 4455



About the Human Rights Law Resource Centre

The Human Rights Law Resource Centre (

HRLRC) is an independent community

legal centre that is a joint initiative of the Public Interest Law Clearing House (Vic)

Inc and the Victorian Council for Civil Liberties Inc.

The HRLRC provides and supports human rights litigation, education, training,

research and advocacy services to:

(a) contribute to the harmonisation of law, policy and practice in Victoria and

Australia with international human rights norms and standards;

(b) support and enhance the capacity of the legal profession, judiciary,

government and community sector to develop Australian law and policy

consistently with international human rights standards; and

(c) empower people who are disadvantaged or living in poverty by operating

within a human rights framework.

The four ‘thematic priorities’ for the work of the HRLRC are:

(a) the development, operation and entrenchment of Charters of Rights at a

national, state and territory level;

(b) the treatment and conditions of detained persons, including prisoners,

involuntary patients and persons deprived of liberty by operation of counterterrorism

laws and measures;

(c) the promotion, protection and entrenchment of economic, social and

cultural rights, particularly the right to adequate health care; and

(d) the promotion of equality rights, particularly the rights of people with

disabilities, people with mental illness and Indigenous peoples.