Human Rights Sub-Committee – Second Interim Report on Religious Freedom

Hon Kevin Andrews, Chair of the Human Rights Sub-Committee of the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade, tabled a Second Interim Report on Religious Freedom on behalf of the Sub-Committee yesterday.  This follows an earlier interim report detailed in our briefing here.

Mr Andrews says the report makes two recommendations as to how Australia can strengthen its commitment to protecting the human right of all citizens to freely practice their faith, follow the belief system they choose, or choose to have no beliefs at all.

Recommendation 1
The Sub-Committee recommends that the Australian Government, in consultation with the states and territories, develop and introduce or amend as necessary, legislation to give full effect to Australia’s obligations under Article 18 of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights and Article 18 of the International Covenant on Political and Civil Rights.

Recommendation 2
The Sub-Committee recommends that this inquiry be continued in the 46th parliament, so as to enable a proper and thorough consideration of the international situation for the status of the human right to freedom of religion or belief before a final report can be tabled.

CSA supports these recommendations and the important work being done by the Sub-Committee in documenting and analysing religious freedom in Australia.  The joint submission by CSA and Adventist Schools Australia is extensively quoted in the report.

A full copy of the report can be downloaded from the link below.