Osgoode Hall Law Journal

Document Type

Special Issue Article


This article examines the way in which the Australian legal system protects human rights. It discusses the paucity of constitutionally protected rights and the failure of various attempts made to amend the Constitution in this respect. The paper looks at the inadequacy of the Australian common law and legislation in the protection of rights. It argues that the politics of both federalism and legalism have produced a culture wary of rights discourse. The paper concludes by considering how the Australian protection of rights can be improved and suggests that one way ahead would be to introduce an Australian charter of rights.