Secrecy Laws and Open Government in Australia (ALRC Report 112)
Official secrecy has a necessary and proper province in our system of government. A surfeit of secrecy does not.On 5 August 2008, the Attorney-General of Australia, the Hon Robert McClelland MP, asked the Australian Law Reform Commission to conduct an Inquiry into options for ensuring a consistent approach across government to the protection of Commonwealth …
ALRC submission to Senate Standing Committee inquiry into the Freedom of Information Amendment (Reform) Bill 2009 (Cth) and the Information Commissioner Bill 2009 (Cth)
The Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) makes the following submission to the Senate Standing Committee on Finance and Public Administration inquiry into the draft Freedom of Information Amendment (Reform) Bill 2009 (Cth) and the Information Commissioner Bill 2009 (Cth). The ALRC made a submission to the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet on the …
Secrecy laws and open government
Secrecy laws that impose obligations of confidentiality on individuals handling government information—and the prosecution of public servants for the unauthorised disclosure of such information—can sit uneasily with the Australian Government’s commitment to open and accountable government. Secrecy laws have also drawn sustained criticism on the basis that they unreasonably interfere with the right to freedom …
The Australian Law Reform Commission published the first issue of Reform in January 1976, and then twice a year until 2010. The journal’s aim was to raise public awareness of contemporary legal issues and provides a forum for high-quality debate on issues of law reform in an easy-to-read format. Previous articles contributed by leading Australian …
Review of Secrecy Laws (DP 74)
This Discussion Paper contains a more detailed treatment of the issues raised in the Issues Paper (IP 34) and indicates the Inquiry’s thinking in the form of specific reform proposals.DP 74 is divided into 15 chapters. Proposals for reform are not spread evenly throughout. The early chapters provide mainly contextual or background material, which does not …
Review of Secrecy Laws: Inquiry Snapshot
To facilitate communication about the nature and focus of this Inquiry the ALRC released an overview document, Review of Secrecy Laws—Inquiry Snapshot, in February 2009.Itis written in plain language and provides a ready access to information about the Inquiry and is available online as a virtual document.
Review of Secrecy Laws (IP 34)
IP 34 (released December 2008) is the first consultation document produced during the course of the Secrecy Inquiry. It identifies the main issues relevant to the Inquiry, provides background information and encourages informed community participation.View IP 34 in HTML on the AustLII website.
FOI Inquiry deferred pending Government reforms
Tuesday 22 July 2008: Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) President, Professor David Weisbrot, said today that the ALRC had been informed by the Attorney-General that an inquiry into Freedom of Information (FOI) laws was being suspended as part of the FOI reform process announced by Cabinet Secretary John Faulkner this morning. Professor Weisbrot said: “We …
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Australia’s Federal Record: A Review of Archives Act 1983 (ALRC Report 85)
ALRC Report 85 was tabled in federal Parliament in July 1998, representing the first major review of the Archives Act 1983 (Cth), which was drafted at a time when Commonwealth government records were predominantly in paper format. View ALRC Report 85 in HTML on the AustLII website. This publication is available for purchase in book format.
Review of the Archives Act 1983
The ALRC began its review of the Archives Act in August 1996 – the first major review of the Archives Act 1983 (Cth), which was drafted at a time when Commonwealth government records were predominantly in paper format. The ALRC found that the quality of recordkeeping by Commonwealth agencies varied widely and was often inadequate. …