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Greens stand firm to stop racial discrimination

Penny Wright 5 Sep 2013

The Australian Greens have confirmed they will block any attempt by Tony Abbott's Coalition to change the Racial Discrimination Act to wind back protections against discrimination.

"The Racial Discrimination Act is an extremely important law to protect people against harmful stereotyping and vilification that reinforces systemic racial prejudice and discrimination," says Australian Greens legal affairs spokesperson Senator Penny Wright.

"Who would benefit by changing this law?

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Greens condemn Coalition school policy and venue choice

The Australian Greens have today condemned the Coalition’s education policy for not backing public schooling and questioned the venue choice for the launch.

Australian Greens spokesperson for Schools Senator Penny Wright said Penrith Christian School’s position on homosexuality also highlighted out-dated discrimination exemptions applying to religious schools.

“What’s more shocking than the school’s statements around homosexuality is that Australian law still allows religious schools to expel students and fire teachers on the basis of their sexuality,” Senator Wright said.

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Greens to strengthen discrimination law

Penny Wright 26 Jul 2013

Australian Greens have committed to reviving and improving anti-discrimination laws dumped by the Government earlier this year to protect Australians from being fired, expelled or bullied because of who they are.

In unveiling the Greens' 'Rule of Law' election policy today, Legal Affairs spokesperson Senator Penny Wright said the Greens would also provide further funding of $3 million over the next four years to the Australian Human Rights Commission to implement the stronger laws.

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The Greens' plan for stronger legal protections in Australia

Penny Wright 23 Jul 2013

The Greens care about people - that's why we're making better legal protections for Australians a priority.

Neglecting their 2010 election promises to consolidate equality laws, Labor dumped the draft Human Rights and Anti‐discrimination Bill in March, selling some of our most vulnerable citizens short on the legal protection they deserve.

Despite talk of ratifying the Optional Protocol to the Convention Against Torture (OPCAT) it signed in 2009, the government has failed to do so.

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Govt stands by school discrimination of LGBTI youth

Penny Wright 25 Jun 2013

The Labor Government has refused to acknowledge government anti-discrimination policy may have a direct impact on LGBTI students, said Australian Greens spokesperson for education and legal affairs Senator Penny Wright.

In Question Time today, Senator Wright quizzed the Government on exemptions that allow religious schools to discriminate against LGBTI students.

"Education Minister Peter Garrett this morning called for same sex marriage to be legalised to spare some Australian teenagers from bullying," Senator Wright said.

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Greens call for fix to discrimination law gap

Blanket exemptions from Labor's sex discrimination laws will leave many vulnerable, says Australian spokesperson on Legal Affairs Senator Penny Wright.

Senators from Labor and Liberal parties today refused sign on Senator Wright's recommended changes to the laws, which retain exemptions for religious organisation.

"These exemptions mean a health or homelessness service could refuse to help a transgender person, while a religious school could turn away children because their parents are gay.

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Labor and anti-discrimination laws – where did the wheels fall off?

Penny Wright 20 Mar 2013

Did you know in Australia it is okay for a religious school to refuse an enrolment to a child just because her parents are gay?

Or that a woman can be refused accommodation because she's a victim of domestic violence and she has no legal protection to appeal this decision?

Or that fathers and mothers can lose their jobs because of family responsibilities?

Or that church-run nursing homes can refuse to accept gay or lesbian residents - even if it's the only nursing home in the area?

This seems so out of step with modern Australian society.

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Dumped discrimination reform leaves vulnerable unprotected

Christine Milne 20 Mar 2013

Labor has dumped its own plans for widespread discrimination reform, demonstrating they don't have the courage of their convictions on social reform, say Australian Greens Leader Christine Milne and Greens Attorney-General Spokesperson Penny Wright.

"This is nonsensical. The anti-discrimination reforms had every chance of succeeding in Parliament so why has Labor turned tail and given up on equality again? " Senator Christine Milne said.

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