: DUAO - Vol 41(1)

DUAO - 2016 - Vol 41(1)

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Developments around the country

DownUnderAllOver is a round-up of legal news from both State and federal jurisdictions, and contains topical articles and short pieces from Alternative Law Journal committees around the country.

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Workplaces (Protection from Protesters) Act 2014

The Tasmanian Committee
Tasmania

The passing of the Workplaces (Protection from Protesters) Act 2014 introduced some of the harshest penalties for protesting in Australia with maximum penalties increasing from two years to four years and significant fines being able to be imposed. The Act, which came into effect last year, fulfilled an election promise by the government to address illegal protests in Tasmanian workplaces. Recently, four people including Bob Brown, the former leader of the Australian Greens, were arrested under the new laws for protesting about the logging of the Lapoinya Forest in North West Tasmania.

The charges will be heard in the Magistrates Court later this year and are likely to result in convictions although an appeal on the grounds of incompatibility with the Australian Constitution’s implied freedom of communication regarding governmental and political matters remains a possibility with a large number of community groups, commentators and lawyers continuing to express their concerns with the Act.

(2016) 41(1) AltLJ 70

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Expunging historic homosexual convictions

The Tasmanian Committee
Tasmania

In other news, the Tasmanian government will introduce legislation later this year to expunge the historic criminal records for consensual homosexual sexual activity. Crimes that are expected to be expunged when the Bill is introduced include sexual intercourse against the order of nature, consensual sexual intercourse between males and indecent practices between males. The reform comes after the issue was initially progressed by Robin Banks, Tasmania’s Anti-Discrimination Commissioner and follows similar reforms in South Australia and Victoria. Additionally, a formal apology to those affected, including families and loved ones of those who are deceased, will be made when the Bill is introduced in Tasmania’s House of Assembly.

(2016) 41(1) AltLJ 70

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