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New ALRC Inquiries Announced

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The Australian Law Reform Commission is embarking on two new inquiries. Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus QC announced yesterday that the Commission will investigate legal barriers for people with disabilities, and reforms to Native Title laws.

Discussing the Native Title inquiry, Dreyfus said, “The Native Title Act turns twenty this year. The time has come to consider how to improve native title law and encourage faster, simpler resolution of native title claims for all parties.

The focus of the draft terms of reference for the Native Title – Twenty Years and Beyond inquiry is on proving connection to land and waters, and the question of who can negotiate.

The inquiry Reducing Legal Barriers for People with Disabilities will examine whether Commonwealth legislation creates barriers that prevent people with a disability from exercising their legal rights.

“This inquiry is about maximising choice and autonomy for Australians with disability”, Dreyfus said.

“Most of us take for granted the independent decisions we make about our lives. People with disability deserve the same opportunity.”

Draft terms of reference for both inquiries have been released, with feedback due by 28 June 2013.

It’s been a busy fortnight for the ALRC. The Commission’s copyright inquiry published its discussion paper earlier this week, and the inquiry into older persons participating in the workforce released its final report last week.

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