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Law Reform Commission Act 1973 reference of matters to the law reform commission



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9 .

subject to any treatment, conduct or punishment which was

cruel or inhumane.

A copy of the reference is attached.

Canberra

9 February 1977

6/77

LAW REFORM COMMISSION ACT 1973

REFERENCE OF MATTERS TO THE LAW REFORM COMMISSION

I, ROBERT JAMES ELLICOTT. Attorney-General HAVING REGARD TO

(a) the function of the Law Reform Commission in

pursuance of references to the Commission made

by the Attorney-General, of reviewing laws to

which the Law. Reform Commission Act 1973 applies,

of considering proposals for the making of laws

to which that Act applies and of considering

proposals for uniformity between laws of the

Territories and laws of the States;

(b) the special interest of the Commonwealth in the

welfare of the Aboriginal people of Australia;

(c) the need to ensure that every Aborigine enjoys

basic human rights;

(d) the right Of Aborigines to retain their racial

identity and traditional life style or, where

they so desire, to adopt partially or wholly

a European life style;

(e) the difficulties that have at times emerged in

the application of the existing criminal justice

system to members of the Aboriginal race; and

(f) the need to ensure equitable, humane and fair

treatment under the criminal justice system to

10.

all members of the Australian community.

HEREBY REFER the.following matter to the Law Reform Commission,

as provided by the Law Reform Commission Act,

TO INQUIRE INTO AND REPORT UPON whether it would be desirable

to apply either in whole or in part Aboriginal customary law

to Aborigines, either generally or in particular areas or to

those living in tribal conditions only, and, in particular;

(a) whether, and in what manner, existing courts

dealing with criminal charges against Aborigines .

should be empowered to apply Aboriginal

customary law and practices in the trial and

punishment of Aborigines;

(b) to what extent Aboriginal communities should have

the power to apply their customary law and .

practices in the punishment and rehabilitation

of aborigines; and

(c) any other related matter.

IN MAKING ITS INQUIRY AND REPORT the Commission will give

special regard to the need to ensure that no person should

be subject to any treatment conduct or punishment which is

cruel or inhumane.

DATED this Ninth day of February. 1977.

R.J.Ellicott, Q.C. Attorney-General.