find the latest legal job
Senior Associate - Litigation & Dispute Resolution
Category: Litigation and Dispute Resolution | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Come work for a firm ranked in Lawyers Weekly Top 25 Attraction Firms
View details
Associate - Workplace Relations & Safety
Category: Industrial Relations and Employment Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Employer of choice · Strong team culture
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Banking and Finance Law | Location: All Perth WA
· Freelance opportunities through Vario from Pinsent Masons
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Adelaide SA
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
ABA criticises ‘dangerously broad’ new citizenship bill

ABA criticises ‘dangerously broad’ new citizenship bill

Fiona Mcleod ABA

The federal government’s final draft of its controversial citizenship legislation could unfairly extend to innocent Australians on humanitarian missions, the Australian Bar Association warns.

The government last week introduced the Australian Citizenship Amendment (Allegiance to Australia) Bill, which would allow dual citizens to be stripped of citizenship where they “act inconsistently with their allegiance to Australia”.

ABA president Fiona McLeod said the Bill was an improvement on previous proposals, but she remained “deeply troubled” at its scope.

“The new provisions expand significantly the circumstances in which citizenship is to be revoked,” Ms McLeod said. “Unwieldy provisions that will reach well beyond their intended purpose have replaced the former requirements of a criminal conviction for terrorism-related conduct.”

She warned that the legislation could be applied to people who had been acquitted, had committed only minor offences or who worked with terrorist organisations inadvertently or against their will.

“People who remain loyal to Australia, who are not a threat or have done no harm, such as those who work with humanitarian organisations providing food or medical aid in war-torn parts of the world, can be caught up and lose their Australian citizenship,” Ms McLeod said.

She also suggested the executive would be given excessive power, while court oversight was curtailed.

“The responsibility will fall upon public servants to determine, based on untested and undisclosed information, that certain trigger events have occurred and a person has, by their conduct, been forever stripped of citizenship,” she said.

“The Minister remains vested with an extraordinary power to give practical effect to the revocation and may act unilaterally, without regard to evidence of disloyalty or adverse security threat.”

As an alternative, she encouraged the government to provide for merits review by the courts of any citizenship decisions under the new provisions.

“Laws introduced in the name of security that erode some of our dearest freedoms and exclude judicial scrutiny must be carefully analysed, without undue haste, and the consequences of them clearly explained to all of us. Once done, they cannot easily be undone.”

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

ABA criticises ‘dangerously broad’ new citizenship bill
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Scales of Justice
Oct 19 2017
‘Ego status’ compelled ex-lawyer to defraud $2.97m, court told
Debarred lawyer John Gordon Bradfield told an NSW District Court that he was driven by “ego status...
Australian Lawyers Alliance (ALA), Queensland’s new industrial manslaughter legislation,
Oct 19 2017
ALA welcomes ‘tough’ Qld manslaughter laws
The Australian Lawyers Alliance (ALA) has welcomed Queensland’s new industrial manslaughter legisl...
Legal podcasts, tune in, microphone
Oct 19 2017
Legal podcasts you have to tune in to right now
The rise of the internet has hailed in a new dawn for storytelling. Here’s our top pick of podcast...
APPOINTMENTS
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
opinion
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
Help
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...