Australian Human Rights Commission Act 1986

The Australian Human Rights Commission Act provides for the establishment of the Australian Human Rights Commission to promote an understanding and acceptance of human rights in Australia and to ensure compliance with any international Covenants, Declarations or other international instruments pertaining to human rights, to which Australia is a signatory.

The Commission is empowered to handle discrimination complaints covered by Federal anti-discrimination legislation, ie. the Racial Discrimination Act, the Sex Discrimination Act, the Disability Discrimination Act and the Age Discrimination Act. The Commission also has limited power to investigate and attempt to conciliate complaints of employment discrimination on each of the grounds covered by the ILO Convention Concerning Discrimination in respect of Employment or Occupation. These include discrimination on the basis of age, race, colour or nationality, religion, sex, pregnancy, marital status, national extraction or social origin, medical or criminal record, physical, mental, intellectual, or psychiatric disability, impairment, sexual preference, political opinion or trade union activity.
The Australian Human Rights Commission Act does not in itself render such employment discrimination unlawful. Therefore, recommendations of the Commission are not automatically enforceable. Where there is coverage by specific anti-discrimination legislation, recommendations of the Commission can be enforced through the Federal Court.

Australian Human Rights Commission Act 1986

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