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Australian Centre for Social Cohesion Bill 2015

Part 2 Australian Centre for Social Cohesion

Division 1 Simplified outline

6   Simplified outline

The Centre is established under the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 .

The Director of the Centre has functions relating to improving social cohesion and preventing violent extremism.

The Director is independent, and not subject to direction.

Division 2 Establishment

7   Establishment

             (1)  The Australian Centre for Social Cohesion (the Centre ) is established by this section.

             (2)  The Centre consists of:

                     (a)  a Director; and

                     (b)  any deputy Directors; and

                     (c)  the staff of the Centre.

             (3)  The function of the Centre is to assist the Director in the performance of his or her functions and the exercise of his or her powers.

             (4)  For the purposes of the finance law (within the meaning of the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 ):

                     (a)  the Centre is a listed entity; and

                     (b)  the Director is the accountable authority of the Centre; and

                     (c)  the following persons are officials of the Centre:

                              (i)  the Director;

                             (ii)  the Deputy Director;

                            (iii)  the staff of the Centre; and

                     (d)  the purposes of the Centre include the functions of the Director referred to in section 8.

Division 3 Functions and powers of the Director

8   Functions and powers

             (1)  The Director has the following functions:

                     (a)  to bring together government bodies, law enforcement agencies, members of the public, academics, researchers and former extremists to:

                              (i)  distribute emerging knowledge and foster dialogue around issues relating to violent extremism in Australia; and

                             (ii)  develop policy responses to build resilient and cohesive communities;

                     (b)  to foster the capacity of individuals, organisations and governments to achieve policy objectives relating to improving social cohesion and preventing violent extremism;

                     (c)  to undertake research and educational programs and other programs, on behalf of the Commonwealth, for the purpose of improving social cohesion and preventing violent extremism, and to coordinate any such programs undertaken by any other persons or authorities on behalf of the Commonwealth;

                     (d)  to examine enactments, and (when requested to do so by the Minister) proposed enactments, for the purpose of evaluating their effect or likely effect in relation to improving social cohesion and preventing violent extremism, and to report to the Minister the results of any such examination;

                     (e)  to promote the public discussion of ways of improving social cohesion and preventing violent extremism in Australia;

                      (f)  on his or her own initiative or when requested by the Minister, to report to the Minister as to the laws that should be made by the Parliament, or action that should be taken by the Commonwealth, to improve social cohesion or prevent violent extremism;

                     (g)  to report to the Parliament on any matter related to his or her functions;

                     (h)  to undertake any other function conferred by this Act or any other law of the Commonwealth;

                      (i)  to do anything incidental or conducive to the performance of any of the above functions.

             (2)  In the performance of his or her functions, the Director is to:

                     (a)  engage in public consultation and have regard to the results of such consultation; and

                     (b)  actively involve relevant communities in decisions that affect them.

             (3)  The Director has the power to do all things that are necessary or convenient to be done for or in connection with the performance of his or her functions.

9   Independence of the Director

                   The Director is not subject to direction from anyone in relation to the performance of his or her functions or the exercise of his or her powers.