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Tuesday, 3 May 1994
Page: 96

(Question No. 1000)


Senator Bourne asked the Minister representing the Attorney-General, upon notice, on 27 January 1994:

  What are the delays between the lodgement of complaints and the conciliation process being initiated by the Human Rights Commission, under the following legislation: (a) Racial Discrimination Act 1975; (b) Sex Discrimination Act 1984; (c) Disability Discrimination Act 1992; and (d) Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission Act 1986.


Senator Bolkus —The answer to the honourable senator's question is as follows:

  The Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission has provided me with the following answer:

  Written enquiries received by the Commission are, at present, subject to delays of approximately three months while awaiting determination to see whether they can be accepted as complaints.

  (a) Racial Discrimination Act 1975

  There are no delays, once a matter has been accepted as a complaint, in commencing the conciliation process.

  (b) Sex Discrimination Act 1984

  Delay between acceptance of a complaint and initiation of the conciliation process is typically three months.

  (c) Disability Discrimination Act 1992

  Delays in commencing the conciliation process averaged 3 to 6 months in the first half of the financial year 1993-94.

  (d) Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission Act 1986

  There are no delays, once a matter has been accepted as a complaint, in commencing the conciliation process.