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Monday, 3 November 2003
Page: 21885


Mr McClelland asked the former Attorney-General, upon notice, on 9 September 2003:

Further to the answer to question No. 1967 (Hansard, 28 February 2001, page 24741), will he update that answer in respect of the meeting of the Standing Committee of Attorneys-General held in Canberra in August 2003.


Mr Ruddock (Attorney-General) —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) (a) The Commonwealth's Human Rights Paper, placed before the 7-8 August 2003 meeting of the Standing Committee of Attorneys-General, included the following human rights issues:

the Draft Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

the Optional Protocol to the Torture Convention

the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women

the Optional Protocols to the Convention on the Rights of the Child

the ILO Convention on the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labour

proposals for a Convention on the Rights of People With Disabilities

complaints under International Communications procedures

reporting under International Communications procedures

the Australia-Indonesia Working Group on Legal Cooperation

the Australia-Vietnam Human Rights Dialogue

the Australia-China Human Rights Dialogue

the Australia-Iran Human Rights Dialogue

Disability discrimination legislation and Disability Standards

the development of age discrimination legislation

the reform of the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission (HREOC) and appointments to HREOC

amendments to human rights legislation

the Non-Government Organisations Forum on Domestic Human Rights

the Decade of Human Rights Education

the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties Report on the Convention on the Rights of the Child

the National Action Plan on Human Rights

legal reform in HIV/AIDS and the Fourth National Strategy

the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission report, “Pregnant and Productive: It's a right not a privilege to work while pregnant”

human rights matters in Federal Courts

sterilisation of persons with a decision-making disability, and

the Catholic Education Office's proposal to offer teacher training scholarships to male students.

Other human rights issues on the agenda were the sterilisation of minors with a decision-making disability and transgender issues.

(b) The Commonwealth's Human Rights Paper serves to inform States and Territories about the activities of the Commonwealth in the human rights area. Matters raised in the paper were noted by State and Territory Attorneys-General.

The matters raised in the officers' papers on the sterilisation of minors with a decision-making disability and transgender issues were considered by the Standing Committee of Attorneys-General.

(2) The next meeting is scheduled to be held in Hobart on 13-14 November.