Current inquiries update

On 30 November, the Family Violence and Commonwealth Laws inquiry team delivered its Final Report to the Attorney-General. Under the ALRC Act, the Government now has 15 Parliamentary sitting days in which to table the Report. Until then, the Report is under embargo. In accordance with the practice we established in 2010, we have also produced a short Summary Report that sets out the ALRC’s recommendations and approach to reform to give quick access to the Report. Once these publications have been tabled, they will be free to view or download from the website and available to purchase in hard copy.

The ALRC will also release a series of short fact sheets, designed to provide practical examples illustrating how our recommendations, if implemented by government, might affect various parts of our community, for example people with disability, indigenous peoples; the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex community; and culturally and linguistically diverse groups. These fact sheets will also be available to view or download from the ALRC website.

The Classification Review team, led by Commissioner in Charge, Professor Terry Flew, has been extremely busy these last few months and since releasing the Discussion Paper in September, we have: received over 70 submissions; conducted further consultations in Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne and Brisbane; hosted a public consultation blog; and undertaken—with the support of the Classification Branch—a pilot study of community attitudes to higher level media content. We have also now held two Advisory Committee meetings for this inquiry and are working towards producing the Final Report by the end of February.

Earlier in the year, the Attorney-General announced an upcoming inquiry for the ALRC, a review of Australian copyright law. And on 9 December the Attorney-General also announced that the ALRC will undertake a review of federal legislation to identify provisions that create barriers to older people participating in productive work. The Terms or Reference for both inquiries are yet to be finalised, but we anticipate receiving them in early 2012.