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Official Party Document
The veracity of this document is ensured by the National Council and editing of this page is limited to members of the National Council.


Government transparency

A transparent government is one which is open, communicative, and accountable. Sunlight has always been the best disinfectant and the greatest counter to corruption and rent-seeking. Openness about decisions taken on the public's behalf is also the best way to build public trust. The failure to embody these principles is a large part of the reason public trust has broken down so spectacularly in recent years.

Principles around transparency find practical application in legislative requirements such as Freedom of Information (FoI) laws[1][2] and whistleblower protections. To ensure openness, we believe FOI legislation should be enshrined and enhanced. Exemptions from FOI, which are currently wide and arbitrary, need to be narrower, time limited, and justified by a higher threshold of due cause. A similar strengthening should also apply to whistleblower protections given repeated instances of harsh and inappropriate punishment and deterrence targeted at whistleblowers over the past 10 years.[3]

More transparency also needs to apply with regard to the movement of money in our public institutions. It should no longer be acceptable to shut down public scrutiny of public spending by invoking commercial-in-confidence clauses.[4] Public oversight should never be blocked where spending of public money is concerned. Political donations should also be subject to greater scrutiny so that the public can see who is funding and lobbying their elected representatives.

The state should also be subject to a stronger principle of universality. The state is funded by all citizens, and consequently any services provided by the state and its authorised service providers need to be subject to a firm principle of non-discrimination.

Institutional transparency is one of the easiest ways Australia can improve government function and recover public trust. Pirate Party Australia will push hard for positive change that improves Australia's governance.

Pirate Party Australia advocates the following reforms:

Improve transparency and credibility in systems of governance

  • Codify all federal legislation into an administrative code, civil code, commercial code, criminal code and revenue code, and any specialist codes as necessary.
  • Make all legislation accessible and searchable online with the ability to compare selected revisions side-by-side to see the differences.
  • Make all bills accessible and searchable online with the ability to view proposed amendments in the context of the legislation being amended.
  • Establish a Federal anti-corruption authority with powers modeled on the NSW ICAC.
  • Strengthen the operation and transparency protections afforded by FoI laws.
    • Remove blanket organisational exemptions and evaluate each request on a case-by-case basis.
    • Remove relevance as a criteria for exemption.
    • Exemptions to be subject to time limits, with extensions to be justified.
    • Documents to be unclassified by default.
    • Additional resources to be provided to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner to ensure a robust and speedy FoI review and appeals process.
    • Maintain and expand data availability though data.gov.au and support an Open Data Act mandating that data released under an FoI request is comprehensive and provided in a re-usable format.
  • Provide new protections for whistleblowers.
    • Ensure provisions of the Public Interest Disclosure (Whistleblower Protection) Bill 2012 operate in full.
    • Adopt additional measures to build in further protection to all parties:
      • Indemnity provision to third parties involved in the disclosure of information.
      • An intermediary system for anonymous disclosures, including a mechanism allowing whistleblowers to remain in regular, anonymous contact with investigative authorities.
      • Allowances for expedited data preservation orders, including a provision allowing such orders to take effect before a disclosure is made in cases where evidence is at risk of being destroyed.
      • Provisions to allow for disclosure of irrelevant information, where such information forms part of a larger document whose disclosure in complete form is necessary to preserve the quality of evidence.
  • All contracts and deals with suppliers and other businesses to be placed in the public domain.
  • Insert a non-discrimination clause applying to all publically funded bodies, universities, and bodies paid to act on behalf of the state.
    • Providers will have no right to discriminate on the basis of sex, age, race or sexual alignment in the delivery of service provision, access to resources, or any use of public or educational premises and facilities.
  • Provide an official method for Australians to directly petition the federal government for a change in law or other government policy.
    • All levels of government should recognise and facilitate e-petitions.
    • Petitions reaching a predetermined quota to carry attendant obligations upon governments including mandated parliamentary discussion, meetings with petitioners and formal recognition of issues raised.

Improve transparency and conduct in Australian politics

  • Increase oversight of processes around political donations.
    • Mandatory disclosure of all political gifts and donations provided to elected representatives which have a value over $1000.
      • Donations to be capped at $50 per person for public events.
      • Foreign donations to be banned.
    • Electoral Commissions to collate information into a single searchable database available online and at Electoral Commission offices for ready access to the general public.
      • The database will be updated at three-month intervals, with requirements for donors to report donations within 6 weeks.
    • Prohibit donation splitting between branches of parties to prevent concealment of donations through division into smaller amounts.
    • Create a lobbyists register with mandatory coverage of all lobbyists and full records of all meetings between lobbyists and legislators or government officials.

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Citizens' initiatives

Australians lack any direct way to enact, amend, repeal or vote for or against legislation which affects their lives. A solution to this is to allow citizens to directly petition the Commonwealth Parliament for referendums.

Citizens' initiatives allow citizens to directly participate in legislative decisions. Mechanisms of this kind have been implemented in various forms and to varying degrees in Austria,[5] at the supranational level in the European Union,[6] Finland,[7] all German states,[8] Hungary,[9] Italy,[10] Latvia,[11], Lichtenstein,[12] Lithuania,[13] New Zealand,[14] Poland,[15] Portugal,[16] Spain,[17] Switzerland,[18] several states of the United States[19] and Uruguay.[20]

The Pirate Party supports the right of Australians to exercise legislative power in certain circumstances using citizens' initiatives. However, the Pirate Party also recognises that setting a threshold is necessary to prevent abuse of the system by special interest groups.

The Pirate Party therefore supports two levels of initiatives modelled closely on the systems in Latvia, Hungary, Brandenburg and Hamburg,[21] but with adjustments made to accommodate Australia's significant geographic size and low population density. The first level, an agenda initiative, would have a lower threshold and be a binding petition to place an issue on the parliamentary agenda. If Parliament fails to take action, a full-scale initiative with a higher threshold would compel Parliament to hold a binding referendum. This allows legislative development to be guided by parliamentary institutions and procedures and to arrive at considered and enlightened decisions, as well as helping to avoid populism and the disregarding of minority interests.[22] Combining agenda and full-scale initiatives allows Australian citizens to encourage their representatives to take action, while providing a mechanism to challenge parliamentary decisions.

The Pirate Party supports legislation allowing citizens' initiatives as a temporary measure, but ultimately this right should be enshrined in the Australian Constitution.

Pirate Party Australia advocates the following reforms:

Support for citizens' initiatives

  • Enact a referendum to insert provisions allowing citizens' initiatives in the Australian Constitution.
    • Initiatives would be divided into two tiers: "agenda initiatives" and "full-scale initiatives."
      • Agenda initiatives would be non-binding mechanisms modelled on the systems in Latvia, Hungary, Brandenburg and Hamburg, which would compel Parliament to consider a particular proposal.[23]
        • Agenda initiatives would have a petition threshold set at 0.2% of the number of enrolled electors at the Federal Election prior to the submission of the petition.
      • Full-scale intitiatives are binding mechanisms to compel the holding of a referendum on a particular proposal.
        • Full-scale intitiatives would have a petition threshold set at 1% of the number of enrolled electors at the Federal Election prior to the submission of the petition.
    • Citizens' initiatives should be permitted for enacting, amending, repealing or otherwise challenging legislation.
  • Specifics relating to citizens' initiatives would be dealt with by legislation.
    • Citizens' initiatives will be obliged to provide reasons for the petition and identify objectionable aims or provisions of the legislation if supporting a repeal.
    • Legislation repealed or rejected as a result of a citizens' initiative (or legislation that is similar) could not be re-enacted without the approval of a referendum unless the objectionable provisions or their effect have been removed.[24]
      • The High Court of Australia will have power to determine whether legislation is the same or similar and whether or not the objectionable aspects remain.
    • To avoid excessive polling, referendums should be held at fixed intervals.[25]
      • Unless there are three or greater successful full-scale initiatives, referendums should be held at the same time as Federal Elections.

Certain decisions to be reserved for Parliament

  • The decision to go to war should be vested exclusively in the Australian Parliament, not the Executive.
  • Executive power should be removed with regard to international legal instruments such as treaties and trade agreements.
    • The accession to and ratification of such instruments will be decided by Parliament.

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Recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and prohibition of racial discrimination

Although European colonisation of our country began in 1788, the Australian continent has been the home of indigenous societies and cultures for at least 40,000 years.[26] However, numerous indigenous societies have faced virtual destruction as a consequence of discrimination,[27] paternalism,[28] genocide,[29] as well as the introduction of diseases,[30] substance abuse,[31] slavery[32] and dependency on the state.[33] Families have been broken up,[34] and discrimination in the criminal justice system[35] has inflicted further harm on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and their societies. Moves to amend the travesties of the past have been positive. The High Court's decision in the Mabo v Queensland (No 2)[36] overturned the doctrine of terra nullius that was used to dispossess Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.[37] The Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) restored some land rights to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples. The 2008 apology to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples was symbolic of a nation willing to make amends for the horrors of the past.[38] However, more needs to be done before we can truly have reconciliation in Australia.

Efforts have been made to recognise the rights of indigenous peoples (particularly in relation to land) in places such as the United States, New Zealand, Canada, Malaysia and South Africa.[39] The Expert Panel on Constitutional Recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples draws attention to the recognition of indigenous inhabitants in Finland, Norway, Sweden, Greenland (Denmark), Russia, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico and the Philippines, in addition to Canada, New Zealand, South Africa and the United States.[40] These efforts range from recognition by the courts to treaties and constitutional recognition.

The Australian Constitution does not recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples as the original inhabitants of our country. It was drafted in an era of racial discrimination and the shadow on our constitution is undeniable.[41] In particular Section 25 permits states to discriminate on the basis of race by disqualifying persons of that race from voting, and Section 51(xxvi) permits the Commonwealth Parliament to create laws for "the people of any race for whom it is deemed necessary to make special laws."[42]

It is against that backdrop that the Pirate Party supports some of the recommendations of the Expert Panel on Constitutional Recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander Peoples for a referendum to repeal the 'race provisions' in the Australian Constitution (Sections 25 and 51(xxvi)), and to include an explicit prohibition of racial discrimination.[43]

It is clear from the Uluru Statement from the Heart[44] that Indigenous Australians do not want constitutional recognition as proposed by the Expert Panel. It is also clear that many indigenous activists oppose the Uluru Statement from the Heart because it does not include the possibility of a sovereign Treaty. With this in mind, Pirate Party Australia supports Indigenous efforts to resolve the injustices of Australia’s colonial history. We recognise that sovereignty has never been ceded and support efforts to negotiate in good faith a Treaty, Treaties or other formal agreements between the Commonwealth of Australia and the First Nations as decided by representative indigenous bodies.

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Electoral System Reform

In a well functioning democracy, the outcome of an election should reflect the will of the people who voted. Interest groups, both big and small, should be able to look at the results and agree that the process was carried out with integrity and everyone is fairly represented. Further, the resulting government should have support from the majority of the population. Judged by that standard, Australian electoral systems are thoroughly broken.

Current systems fail voters

The number of seats a political party obtains in the Lower Houses of State and Federal Parliaments usually has little relation to the number of voters who support that party. Governments are regularly formed with nowhere near a majority of first-choice support. Sometimes 20% or more of the voting population goes without having their votes represented at all. In one particularly spectacular case in Queensland in 2012, an election produced a result where only a single party had any significant presence in Parliament.[45] This disconnect becomes even worse when it is remembered that MPs almost always vote according to party lines.

The root cause of this problem is the use of many single-member electoral divisions. Voters who form a minority in many divisions fail to elect their preferred party's candidates and can easily go without any representation, even though they may be a large portion of the population overall. Conversely, voters who form small majorities in many divisions can easily become overrepresented. When this geographic bias is intentionally exploited it is called gerrymandering. But even when intentional gerrymandering isn't an issue, the problem remains unless the voting system is designed to consider the big picture as well as individual divisions.

Follow-on effects from this are numerous. Landslides happen whenever a party obtains many small majorities, producing overrepresentation. Safe seats become commonplace and become neglected in favour of swing seats. Minor parties face extreme difficulty obtaining seats, as they nearly always have thinly spread support. The system encourages excessive focus on local issues even in State and Federal parliaments, because concentrated regionalism is the only path to success. Focus for minor parties shifts towards where their chances are greater, which is usually the Upper Houses, and helps to produce overcrowded "tablecloth" ballot papers. The political landscape stagnates with a mere few adversarial parties playing tug-of-war, switching back and forth every few terms.

Details differ among the different levels of government in Australia, but this problem is nearly always present. Even in the ACT's Legislative Assembly and Tasmania's House of Assembly, where multi-seat divisions are used, some disconnect between voter preferences and party results can be observed. The only places where the problem and flow on effects are unobserved are the Tasmanian Legislative Council and a number of rural Local Councils, where independent candidates dominate.

Partly as a consequence of of the 'tablecloth' ballot papers, substantial nomination deposits are required to stand in many elections around the country. For all but a handful of candidates, these deposits are effectively fees, taking up limited financial resources that would be better spent on campaigning. Further, the continued size of the Federal Senate and NSW Legislative Council ballots indicate that such fees are insufficient as a barrier to entry anyway. Finally, it is common for parties to stand candidates in areas those candidates have no connection to - because for parties, the nomination deposit is the only external restriction.

Other more minor issues also plague Australia's electoral systems. Federal division, State district, and Local ward boundaries differ wildly. Optional vs full preferencing differs depending on State, as does the methods of filling unexpected mid-term vacancies. Term lengths differ, both in length and fixed vs varying, between different levels of government. Single Transferable Vote is counted by software processing of scanned ballots, yet the software used is not made available for scrutiny.[46]

Solutions and non-solutions

Fixing the big problem and most of the follow-on effects requires a voting system that is designed to ensure that overall party support matches overall seats won. Voting systems that are designed to ensure this are called "proportional representation" systems. There are three well-tested voting systems that can provide this, or close enough to it.

Open Party List[47] is a system where voters cast a vote for a party and a candidate within that party. Seats are then allocated to each party according to the proportion of votes that party received, and those seats are filled by the most popular candidates within each party. Implementations often involve several separate multi-seat divisions, but overall proportionality can still be maintained by reserving some seats to allocate according to the overall vote. Of the three systems mentioned here, this has the highest number of other countries already using it. However it is the most different to all systems currently in use in Australia, and it has been previously tried and rejected by voters in the ACT. It also does not handle independent candidates well, nor does it do a good job providing localised representatives.

Single Transferable Vote[48] is currently in use for Local elections in some States, most Upper Houses, and the ACT Legislative Assembly and Tasmanian House of Assembly. Because political party is not taken into account, this system does not guarantee proportionality. It often gets close in practice but only when a single multi-seat division is used. This places practical limits on the overall number of seats and means no localised representation at all. The system does, however, handle independent candidates extremely well, and minimises potentially wasted votes when the available number of seats is small. These characteristics make it ideal for Local Council elections and the Upper Houses of Parliament, but not the larger Lower Houses that are generally intended to represent the population of the State/Territory/Country as a whole.

Mixed Member Proportional[49] is a system where approximately half of the available seats are filled with candidates elected from single seat divisions. Then the remaining seats are allocated to each party to ensure that the overall proportion of votes each party received corresponds to the number of seats each party obtains. If preferences are used for the single seat divisions, the required ballots closely resemble current Instant Runoff ballots. Independent candidates and localised representation are both handled about as well as with current single seat divisions. This system works best when the overall number of seats to be allocated is not too small, and most candidates are affiliated with a party. These characteristics make it ideal for the Lower Houses of Parliament. This system was chosen by New Zealand in the early 1990's when conducting reform to their electoral system.

Electronic voting, as in where votes are cast and counted entirely electronically, is not a solution. The most it could offer is an easier time handling excessively large ballot papers. But, as pointed out, that is only a minor symptom of the real problem, and in return for convenience electronic voting introduces a laundry list[50][51] of issues that compromise trust in any election. Electronically assisted voting, as in where votes are selected on a computer, printed out, then handled the same as other paper ballots, does not address the underlying problems. It too will only offer an easier time handling large ballot papers, and currently would add significant unnecessary expense to elections.

While it is distasteful to impose barriers to democratic participation, it is acceptable to require prospective candidates to demonstrate some level of community support. This support should not be measured in dollars (as it currently is), but rather in people: nomination signatures from electors of that district, region or state.

The importance of a Royal Commission

Any political party pushing directly to change the electoral system is subject to a conflict of interest. Political rivals will rightly have suspicions, and the entire issue will likely fail to gain traction. The only way to build a consensus and ensure a fair outcome is to empower an independent body to investigate the issue and come up with solutions. For that reason, the goal of this policy is to have a Royal Commission appointed which will determine a fair course of action.

Proposed Reforms

Pirate Party Australia advocates for a Royal Commission on the electoral systems used in all levels of government in Australia, to decide on how to best make our elections fairer, more democratic, and more accessible to the voting population.

To that Royal Commission, Pirate Party Australia will make the following recommendations:

Voting Systems

  • Mixed Member Proportional is the best option for use in all State and Federal Lower Houses
    • This would ensure both accurate overall representation of the votes, and that all areas have an MP tasked with representing their concerns
    • Optional preferential is the best option for electing the division seats, to allow voters full control and for consistency with Single Transferable Vote
    • No thresholds should be used, as they distort the results away from how people voted
    • The Largest Remainder Method with Droop quota[52] is the best option for allocating top-up seats to parties, for consistency with Single Transferable Vote
    • Best Near Winner[53] should be used for filling top-up seats to ensure all MPs are directly elected by the people
  • Single Transferable Vote is the best option for use in all Local Councils and State and Federal Upper Houses
    • This works well with both the large number of Independent Local Councillors and the small number of seats available in most State and Federal Upper House elections
    • Above The Line voting should be abolished, as reform to the Lower Houses should ease the candidate crowding that originally necessitated Above The Line
    • The number of Wards for Local Councils should be minimised, ideally using only one whenever practical to avoid geographic bias
  • Robson Rotation[54] should be adopted for all elections in order to eliminate the effects of donkey voting


  • Abolish nomination deposits entirely, or else reduce them to a nominal level
  • Instead, require nomination signatures, from residents of the relevant electorate
  • The number of signatures should be set at a level reflecting the minimum number of campaigners required to interact with a majority of the electorate
    • For the House of Representatives, 10 nominators per candidate, as the top 10 polling places in each Division serve about half the population there
    • For the Senate, 10 nominators for every House of Representatives Division in the State or Territory, per candidate
  • To ease the volume of election-time paperwork:
    • Prospective candidates would be permitted to lodge nominations throughout the year prior to the election
    • Parties undergoing membership audits in the year prior to the election, who demonstrate membership numbers in any electorate equal to or exceeding the nomination requirements, would be pre-approved to stand candidate(s) in those electorates
    • Members of Parliament who are re-contesting their seat would be exempt from these requirements


  • State and Federal geographic division boundaries should be aligned, but Local Council areas should be left to reflect natural community boundaries
    • This would be made practical through the flexible number of single division vs topup seats involved in Mixed-Member Proportional
  • All government elections should be standardised to fixed four year term lengths


  • Paper ballots should remain the only method used for casting votes at all elections, with voters encouraged to cast votes in person at dedicated polling places
  • Any and all software used in the scanning and counting of paper ballots should have its source code made available to the public for scrutiny

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  1. "About freedom of information", Office of the Australian Information Commissioner, http://www.oaic.gov.au/freedom-of-information/about-freedom-of-information (Accessed 20 June 2013)
  2. "Freedom of Information Act 1982", Section 3, Commonwealth Consolidated Acts http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/consol_act/foia1982222/s3.html (Accessed 20 June 2013)
  3. "Whistleblowers' Stories", Whistleblowers Australia, http://www.whistleblowers.org.au/whistleblowersstories.html (Accessed 20 June 2013)
  4. "Beyond Commercial in Confidence: Accounting for Power Privatisation in Victoria", Accounting Auditing and Accountability Journal, Vol 22 No. 8, pp. 1258-1259 (January 2009).
  5. Karim Giese, 'The Austrian Agenda Initiative: An Instrument Dominated by Opposition Parties' in Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 175.
  6. Treaty of Lisbon Amending the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty Establishing the European Community, opened for signature 13 December 2007, [2007] OJ C 306/1 (entered into force 1 December 2009) art 11.4; Bruno Kaufman, 'Transnational "Babystep": The European Citizens' Initiative' in Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 228.
  7. Constitution of Finland (1999) s 53.
  8. Theo Schiller, 'Initiative Instruments in Germany: Variations in Regional States' in Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 89.
  9. Zoltán Tibor Pállinger, 'Citizens' Initiatives in Hungary: An Additional Opportunity for Power-Sharing in an Extremely Majoritarian System' in Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 113.
  10. Pier Vincenzo Uleri, 'Institutions of Citizens' Political Participation in Italy: Crooked Forms, Hindered Institutionalization' in Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 71.
  11. Daunis Auers, 'An Electoral Tactic? Citizens' Initiatives in Post-Soviet Latvia' in Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 53.
  12. Wilfried Marxer, 'Initiatives in Lichtenstein: Safety Valve in a Complex System of Government' in Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 37.
  13. Algis Krupavičius 'Citizens' Initiatives in Lithuania: Initiative Institutions and Their Political Impact in a New Democracy' in Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 134.
  14. Citizens Initiated Referenda Act 1993 (NZ).
  15. Anna Rytel-Warzocha, 'Popular Initiatives in Poland: Citizens' Empowerment or Keeping Up Appearances?' in Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 212.
  16. Constitution of the Portuguese Republic (2005) art 52.
  17. Víctor Cuesta-López, 'The Spanish Agenda Initiative and the Reform of Its Legal Regime: A New Chance for Participatory Democracy?' in Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 193.
  18. Georg Lutz, 'Switzerland: Citizens' Initiatives as a Measure to Control the Political Agenda' in Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 17.
  19. University of Southern California, State I&R, Initiative & Referendum Institute <http://www.iandrinstitute.org/statewide_i%26r.htm>.
  20. Constitution of the Oriental Republic of Uruguay (1966) art 79.
  21. Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 248, 8–9.
  22. Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 4.
  23. Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 8–9.
  24. Helen Gregorczuk, 'Citizens Initiated Referenda' (Research Bulletin No 1/98, Parliamentary Library, Parliament of Queensland, 1998) 8.
  25. Georg Lutz, 'Switzerland: Citizens’ Initiatives as a Measure to Control the Political Agenda' in Maija Setälä and Theo Schiller (eds), Citizens' Initiatives in Europe (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012) 18.
  26. Bill Gammage, The Biggest Estate on Earth: How Aborigines Made Australia (Allen & Unwin, 2011) xxii.
  27. Prue Vines, Law and Justice in Australia (Oxford University Press, 2nd ed, 2013) 125; Namatjira v Raabe (1959) 100 CLR 664.
  28. See eg Aboriginals Ordinance Act 1918 (NT) s 16(1); Barbara Cummings, 'Writs and rights in the Stolen Generations (NT) case' (1996) 3(86) Aboriginal Law Bulletin 8, 8–10; Trevorrow v State of South Australia (No 5) [2007] SASC 285; see generally Prue Vines, Law and Justice in Australia (Oxford University Press, 2nd ed, 2013) 137–154.
  29. Commonwealth, Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody, Report of the Inquiry into the Death of Malcolm Charles Smith (1989) 1–5; Henry Reynolds, Forgotten War (NewSouth, 2013) 138–157; compare to the definition of 'genocide' in the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, opened for signature 9 December 1948, 78 UNTS 277 (entered into force 12 January 1951) art 2; Kevin Gilbert, Because a White Man will Never Do It (Angus and Robertson, 1994) 2–5, 10; Henry Reynolds, Frontier: Aborigines, Settlers and Land (Allen & Unwin, 1987) 48–50, 73–74, 104–105.
  30. Watkin Tench and Tim Flannery (ed), 1788 (Text Publishing, first published 1789, 1996 ed) 103; Henry Reynolds, Forgotten War (NewSouth, 2013) 136–137; Russell Hogg and David Brown, Rethinking Law & Order (Pluto Press, 1998) 69.
  31. Kevin Gilbert, Because a White Man will Never Do It (Angus and Robertson, 1994) 2–5, 10; Russell Hogg and David Brown, Rethinking Law & Order (Pluto Press, 1998) 69.
  32. Henry Reynolds, Frontier: Aborigines, Settlers and Land (Allen & Unwin, 1987) 48–50, 73–74, 104–105.
  33. Russell Hogg and David Brown, Rethinking Law & Order (Pluto Press, 1998) 69; Kevin Gilbert, Because a White Man will Never Do It (Angus and Robertson, 1994) 2–5, 10.
  34. Russell Hogg, 'Punishment and Race in Colonial Settler Society: The Australian Case' (2001) 3 Punishment and Society 362, 362–365; Barbara Cummings, 'Writs and rights in the Stolen Generations (NT) case' (1996) 3(86) Aboriginal Law Bulletin 8, 8–10; Prue Vines, Law and Justice in Australia (Oxford University Press, 2nd ed, 2013) 137–154.
  35. Commonwealth, Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody, National Report (1991); Prue Vines, Law and Justice in Australia (Oxford University Press, 2nd ed, 2013) 135–137; Russell Hogg and David Brown, Rethinking Law & Order (Pluto Press, 1998) 69; Alan Norrie, Crime, Reason and History (Butterworths, 2001) 214; Rob White and Santina Perrone, Crime and Social Control (Oxford University Press, 2nd ed, 2005) 42; Michael Head and Scott Mann, Law in Perspective (UNSW Press, 2nd ed, 2009) 48; Kevin Gilbert, Because a White Man will Never Do It (Angus and Robertson, 1994) 2–5, 10–11.
  36. (1992) 175 CLR 1.
  37. Peter Butt, Land Law (Thomson Reuters, 6th ed, 2010) 975–976.
  38. Commonwealth, Parliamentary Debates, House of Representatives, 13 February 2008, 167–177 (Kevin Rudd, Prime Minister and Brendan Nelson, Leader of the Opposition).
  39. Delgamuukw v British Columbia (1997) 153 DLR (4th) 193; Faulkner v Tauranga District Council (1996) 1 NZLR 357; Johnson v McIntosh 21 US 681 (1823); see also Fejo v Northern Territory (1998) 195 CLR 96, 149 (Kirby J); Treaty of Waitangi (signed 6 February 1840); Sir Kenneth Keith, 'The Treaty of Waitangi in the Courts' (1990) 14 New Zealand Universities Law Review 37; Howard R Berman, 'The Concept of Aboriginal Rights in the Early Legal History of the United States' (1978) 27 Buffalo Law Review 637; Sir Anthony Mason, 'The Rights of Indigenous Peoples in Lands Once Part of the Old Dominions of the Crown' (1997) 46 International & Comparative Law Quarterly 812; Ronald Sackville, 'The Emerging Australian Law of Native Title: Some North American Comparisons' (2000) 74 Australian Law Journal 820; Paul Havemann (ed), Indigenous Peoples Rights in Australia, Canada and New Zealand (Oxford University Press, 1999); Canada Act 1982 (UK) c 11, sch B s 35; Adong bin Kuwau v Kerajaan Negeri Johor [1997] 1 MLJ 418; Nor Anak Nyawai v Borneo Pulp Plantations [2001] CLJ 769; Sagong Tasi v Kerajaan Negeri Selangor [2002] 2 CLJ 543; Alexkor Ltd v Richtersveld Community (2004) 5 SA 460 (Constitutional Court).
  40. Expert Panel on Constitutional Recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, Recognising Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples in the Constitution, January 2012, 49–61.
  41. Official Record of the Debates of the Australasian Federal Convention, Melbourne, 8 February 1898, 664–691; Tony Blackshield and George Williams, Australian Constitutional Law and Theory (Federation Press, 5th ed, 2010) 127; George Williams, Human Rights under the Australian Constitution (Oxford University Press, 1999) 41.
  42. Australian Constitution ss 25, 51(xxvi).
  43. Expert Panel on Constitutional Recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, Recognising Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples in the Constitution, January 2012, 220–221.
  44. https://www.referendumcouncil.org.au/sites/default/files/2017-05/Uluru_Statement_From_The_Heart_0.PDF
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