Equal recognition before the law for people with disability

The Australian Law Reform Commission Review of equal recognition before the law and legal capacity for people with disability is considering reform of Commonwealth laws and legal frameworks to better provide people with disability equal recognition before the law—in particular, in relation to the right to make decisions that affect their lives, and to have those decisions respected.

As part of this review ALRC has released a discussion paper for public consultation. In Equality, Capacity and Disability in Commonwealth Laws the ALRC is proposing a new Commonwealth model of supported decision-making, underpinned by principles, which will operate when people interact with Commonwealth agencies and systems. The ALRC is also proposing that this model will guide a review of state and territory laws effecting people with disability.

The reforms would encourage supported decision-making—where people with disability are assisted to make their own decisions—rather than being assumed as unable to make decisions or encouraged to allow other people to make decisions for them. In this regard, the inquiry is an internationally groundbreaking examination of the implications of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities for laws and legal frameworks that may disempower people with disability.

AHRCentre project director, Rosemary Kayess, is a member of the review Advisory Committee and will be preparing the AHRCentre submission to the review.

The closing date for submissions to this Discussion Paper is 30 June 2014.

It is online at: http://www.alrc.gov.au/publications/disability-dp8.


The ALRC has online submissions directly through the ALRC website where an online submission form will allow you to respond to individual questions: http://www.alrc.gov.au/content/disability-dp81-make-submission