Submission into the Migration Amendment (Strengthening the Character Test) Bill 2018 (December 2018)
The Refugee Council’s submission stated our significant concerns about and opposition to this Bill, and expressed profound concerns about the continuing expansion of executive powers under the visa cancellations framework, and the undermining of safeguards and independent scrutiny.
Submission on the implementation of OPCAT in Australia: Second stage of consultations (September 2018)
On 21 December 2017, the Australian Government ratified the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (OPCAT). The Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (OPCAT) is an international agreement aimed at preventing torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. OPCAT builds on the United Nations Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT).
The key aim of OPCAT is to prevent the mistreatment of people in detention.In February 2017, the then Commonwealth Attorney-General asked the Australian Human Rights Commission to conduct consultations with civil society to provide advice back to the Australian Government on views about OPCAT implementation. The Refugee Council of Australia made a submission to that round of consultation. In the second stage of consultation with civil society, the Human Rights Commission invited comments on the proposals in the Interim Report, and asked further questions regarding how OPCAT should be implemented in Australia. It released a consultation paper.
The inquiry into the implementation of the national disability insurance scheme and the provision of disability services in New South Wales (September 2018)
On 21 June 2018, the New South Wales state parliament announced an inquiry into the policy and systematic issues concerning the provision of disability services and the implementation of the National Disability Insurance Scheme in New South Wales.
The inquiry into the Migration (Validation of Port Appointment) Bill 2018 (August 2018)
On 21 August 2018 the Senate referred the provisions of the Migration (Validation of Port Appointment) Bill 2018 to the Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee for inquiry and report. The Bill would retrospectively authorise the actions of the Australian Government in taking people to Ashmore Reef so that they would not be entitled to claim protection in Australia.
The inquiry into statutory review of the Tribunals Amalgamation Act (August 2018)
On 27 July 2018, the Hon Ian David Francis Callinan AC QC, former Justice of the High Court of Australia, was appointed to undertake a statutory review of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal in accordance with section 4 of the Tribunals Amalgamation Act 2015 (TA Act).
The inquiry into future employment services (August 2018)
On 22 January 2018, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash, appointed an Expert Advisory Panel (‘the Panel’) to help shape the design of future employment services. The Department of Jobs and Small Business has since released a discussion paper and called for submissions from interested parties regarding the future employment services model.
Submission to the inquiry into Australian aid strategic effectiveness (June 2018)
On 28 March 2018, the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade was asked to inquire into and report on the strategic effectiveness and outcomes of Australia’s aid program in the Indo-Pacific and its role in supporting Australia’s regional interests.
The inquiry into the efficacy of current regulation of Australian migration agents (April 2018)
The inquiry into the review processes associated with visa cancellations made on criminal grounds (April 2018)
On 14 March 2018, the Joint Standing Committee on Migration began an inquiry into the review processes associated with visa cancellations made on criminal grounds.
Submission on the Australian Citizenship Legislation Amendment (Strengthening Commitments) Bill 2018 (April 2018)
The Australian Citizenship Legislation Amendment (Strengthening the Commitments for Australian Citizenship and Other Measures) Bill 2018 was introduced into parliament into Parliament on 7 Feb 2018. The Bill is very similar to the Australian Citizenship Legislation Amendment (Strengthening the Requirements for Australian Citizenship and Other Measures) Bill 2017, other than it significantly extends the residence requirement for citizenship.
The inquiry into the Migration Amendment (Clarification of Jurisdiction) Bill 2018 (April 2018)
On 15 February 2018 the Senate referred the provisions of the Migration Amendment (Clarification of Jurisdiction) Bill 2018 to the Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee for inquiry and report by 5 June 2018. It amends the Migration Act 1958 to clarify the allocation of jurisdiction between the Federal Circuit Court and the Federal Court in relation to a migrant decision. It also makes amendments to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal Act 1975.
The review of the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (February 2018)
On 20 December 2017, the Assistant Minister to the Treasurer, the Hon. Michael Sukkar MP, announced the legislated five-year review of the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission Act 2012 (Cth) and the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (Consequential and Transitional) Act 2012 (Cth), both of which commenced operation in December 2012. The independent panel conducted a public consultation including through public submissions.
Submission on managing Australia’s migration intake (February 2018)
The Department of Home Affairs published in late 2017 a Discussion Paper on Managing Australia’s Migration Intake. The Discussion Paper asks for recommendations to help strengthen Australia’s Migration Program now and over the long-term.