Top of page

Forum to showcase innovative rights-based solutions to social issues in Sydney

illustration colorful hands

With a plethora of issues currently impacting significantly on the rights of people across Australia, an upcoming landmark national conference during the Vivid Sydney festival is set to explore a range of new approaches to protecting and promoting human rights in Australia.

Concerns about racism and freedom of speech stemming from the impact of the war in Gaza; Australia’s domestic violence, youth justice, immigration and housing crises; discrimination against First Nations and transgender people; addressing the recommendations of the recent Disability Royal Commission – these and many other issues will frame discussions at the Free + Equal Human Rights Conference over 6 and 7 June.

Presented by the Australian Human Rights Commission, the conference is set to attract hundreds of delegates from across Australia’s human rights, civil society, legal, justice, government and business sectors to discuss a range of human rights and social justice issues, including paving the way for the introduction of an Australian Human Rights Act and reforming Australia’s Race, Sex, Disability and Age Discrimination Acts.

A week before the conference, the Federal Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights is set to release its highly-anticipated report into the elements of a new national human rights framework, including whether an Australian Human Rights Act should be enacted and if Australia’s suite of anti-discrimination Acts should be updated.

Commission President Emeritus Professor Rosalind Croucher said: “Human rights are at the forefront of many issues which feature in today’s headlines, so our conference couldn’t be timelier in terms of exploring how we can improve how people in Australia experience justice, equity, compassion and respect.

“An Australian Human Rights Act as well as proposed updates to Australia’s anti-discrimination laws would be major reforms that would have a significant impact on Australia’s legal, justice, government, civil society and business sectors, so understanding the trajectory of these proposals is vital for people working across these areas, including students of law, politics, business and culture.”

“Coming hot on the heels of the PJCHR’s inquiry, the Free + Equal Conference is a not-to-be-missed gathering for anyone with an interest in human rights to be involved in a very timely discussion about how we can advance human rights in Australia and build momentum for a revitalisation of our human rights framework with an Australian Human Rights Act at the centre.”

More than 60 eminent experts, thought leaders, social justice advocates and community heroes will provide a lively and inspirational blend of views, insights and perspectives at what promises to be Australia’s premier human rights event for 2024.

Waleed Aly, Jennifer Robison, Michael Kirby, Adam Spencer, Nazeem Hussain and others will kick off proceedings with the future-shock Rights On Time panel show on Thursday 6 June, while Ten News First presenter Narelda Jacobs will emcee the full day conference on Friday 7 June which will feature more than 50 diverse speakers and panellists across 12 engaging sessions and events. Find out more:


You might also like

wheelchair user in the street wheelchair user in the street

Budget falls short in restoring confidence to disability sector

The 2024-25 Federal Budget was a missed opportunity for government…

rear side audiences sitting listening speackers stage rear side audiences sitting listening speackers stage

Accessibility seminars available for Darwin businesses

The City of Darwin will host a seminar series, free…

Flags in front United Nations Palais in Geneva Switzerland. Flags in front United Nations Palais in Geneva Switzerland.

UN Human Rights Council to hold its fifty-fifth session

The United Nations Human Rights Council will hold its fifty-fifth…

female teacher sitting at desk with a Down syndrome schoolboy female teacher sitting at desk with a Down syndrome schoolboy

NSW expands disability support classes in mainstream schools

An extra 243 support classes have been approved to open…