The Bill equips activists with new ‘hateful conduct’ laws.

The Anti-Discrimination Bill 2024 (QLD) introduces unnecessary ‘hateful conduct’ laws that could be easily weaponised by activists.

Clause 84 of the Bill introduces a prohibition on conduct that could reasonably be considered ‘hateful, reviling, seriously contemptuous, or seriously ridiculing’ another person or members of a group that posess a protected attribute such as sex characteristics or gender identity.

This new prohibition is a threat to religious freedom because:

  • it lowers the bar usually set in vilification laws, that of ‘incitement’ to violence. Now the conduct would only need to be ‘reasonably considered to be hateful’; and
  • it narrows the relevant group considered by the court to those who share the protected attribute of the complainant – asking whether this group would consider the conduct reasonable.

This is a departure from the usual approach employed by the courts in determining what is reasonable in the circumstances.

It will make it extremely difficult for religious organisations and religious individuals to argue that their religious speech was ‘reasonable’ according to the group that has taken offense.

On top of this, the clause also provides no protections for religious speech.

This clause is a threat to free and open communication of religious beliefs and seriously lowers the bar for activists to use this law to attack ideas and religious beliefs that they do not like.

This Bill will have serious consequences for religious organisations and schools in QLD.

It guts protections for religious freedoms in the State.

The Bill should be rejected.

The time to speak up is NOW!

Write to your MP and let them know that you oppose the Anti-Discrimination Bill 2024 (QLD).




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