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Gillard must adopt anti-discrimination recommendations

Penny Wright 21 Feb 2013

Prime Minister Julia Gillard must accept the recommendations of the Australian Greens and her own backbenchers to remove blanket exemptions for religious organisations providing services from proposed anti-discrimination law.

Australian Greens spokesperson on Legal Affairs and committee member Senator Penny Wright said the Senate inquiry report released today adopted a number of Greens recommendations to bring anti-discrimination laws into line with international standards.

"The Australian Greens have always said current exemptions are unacceptable," Senator Wright said.

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‘Offend’ rethink offers chance for further scrutiny

Penny Wright 31 Jan 2013

The Australian Greens have welcomed the Attorney General's decision to remove the prohibition on causing offence in the draft anti-discrimination bill.

Greens spokesperson on legal affairs Senator Penny Wright said the move would allow public scrutiny to turn to other areas of improvement needed in the legislation.

"Attorney General Nicola Roxon has made the right decision to remove this clause, which was, I believe, an unintentional overreach and drafting error," Senator Wright said.

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Penny's Blog: Intersex Australians overlooked in anti-discrimination laws

In this day and age, we rightly say it is unacceptable to discriminate against people because they are male or female. Over decades, politicians around the country have designed laws to prevent discrimination and give people an avenue of appeal against unfair treatment.

Under proposed new laws, it will be illegal to discriminate against someone on the basis of their sex or gender identity in all areas of public life. This is a welcome step.

However, there is still no legal protection from discrimination for those who are neither male nor female. 

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Mentally ill should have access to insurance

Insurance exceptions allowing discrimination against people with mental ill-health must be re-examined, says Australian Greens spokesperson for Legal Affairs and Mental Health, Senator Penny Wright.

Through the Senate Inquiry process beginning today, the Australian Greens will seek to amend the exceptions for insurance agencies to make the sector more transparent and accountable.

"It is very disappointing and unfair if these exceptions are being exploited by insurance companies," Senator Wright said.

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Greens to question gaps and overreach in anti-discrimination laws

Penny Wright 20 Jan 2013

The Labor Government's proposed anti-discrimination laws fail to address significant areas of inequality, while potentially overreaching in other areas, says Australian Greens spokesperson on Legal Affairs, Senator Penny Wright.

At Senate hearings on Wednesday and Thursday, Senator Wright will question experts on the possible impacts of the draft legislation.

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Religious discrimination exemptions unacceptable

Penny Wright 16 Jan 2013

Religious organisations and schools receiving government funding should not be exempt from anti-discrimination laws, says Australian Greens spokesperson for Legal Affairs Senator Penny Wright.

"Prime Minister Gillard needs to come clean with what she has promised to Jim Wallace and the Australian Christian Lobby and why," Senator Wright said.

"If she has made a promise that will adversely affect many Australians' ability to work and participate fully in Australian community life then we have a right to know what that promise was.

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Anti-discrimination laws should go further

Penny Wright 20 Nov 2012

The Federal Government's proposed Anti-Discrimination laws should go further to cover other disadvantaged groups and remove entrenched discrimination, says Australian Greens spokesperson on legal affairs Senator Penny Wright.

"We welcome this exposure draft of the Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Bill 2012 and coming Senate inquiry, but will be seeking further improvements," Senator Wright said.

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