Legal Rights Project

Ideas & Liberty / Legal Rights Project

The Institute of Public Affairs has established the Legal Rights Project to stand up for the fundamental legal rights of every Australian. Despite the crucial role these rights play in safeguarding our liberties they are often ignored for the sake of political expedience. Increasingly, Australian governments are guilty of removing our right to silence, reversing the onus of proof, granting sweeping discretionary powers to regulators and serious breaches of the rule of law. These legal rights form the bedrock of a peaceful and prosperous society and the Legal Rights Project has been set up to launch a powerful defence of them.

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Company directors lose out in attack on legal rights

Legal Rights Project | Simon Breheny
The Australian 5th December, 2014

Fundamental legal rights in Australia have been eroded by successive governments of every political stripe. This is the concerning story told by...

George Brandis's solution a cure worse than the disease

Legal Rights Project | Simon Breheny
The Australian 7th November, 2014

In 1776 Thomas Paine wrote: "For as in absolute governments the king is law, so in free countries the law ought to be king; and there ought to be...

Innocence has been lost

Legal Rights Project | Simon Breheny
Australian Financial Review 29th August, 2014

The federal Opposition Leader was asked in a press conference this week whether he supports proposed laws that could send journalists to prison for...

Mandatory sentencing: a king hit for courts

Ideas & Liberty and Legal Rights Project | Chris Berg
The Drum 19th August, 2014

You can smell the air of an election in Victoria. On Sunday the Napthine Government announced it wants 10-year mandatory minimum sentences for...

Inquiry a chance to roll back civil rights curbs

Freedom of Speech and Legal Rights Project | Simon Breheny
The Australian 30th May, 2014

The freedoms inquiry presents the Abbott government with a real opportunity to wind back restrictions on civil liberties and fundamental legal...

Freedom: the forgotten human right

Ideas & Liberty, Freedom of Speech and Legal Rights Project | Chris Berg
The Drum 12th November, 2013

George Brandis is right. Sure, the phrase 'the freedom agenda' sounds a bit naff. But a reorientation of public policy towards fundamental civil...


New study finds 262 breaches of fundamental legal rights in federal laws

MEDIA RELEASE | Simon Breheny

"The fundamental legal rights of all Australians are being systematically eroded under federal laws," says Simon Breheny, Director of the Legal Rights Project at free market think tank the Institute of Public Affairs. A new IPA report entitled The...

The state of fundamental legal rights in Australia


Fundamental legal rights have evolved over hundreds of years. Predominantly, these rights originate from English legal tradition and have been further developed through other Western legal systems. The common law rights that have arisen out of...

IPA FreedomWatch Factsheet: Racial Discrimination Amendment Bill 2014


Racial Discrimination Amendment Bill 2014