Last Thursday 22 February 2013, the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee (Senate Committee) released its report to the Federal Government on the exposure draft of the Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Bill 2012 (the draft Bill).
The Senate Committee's report includes 12 recommendations to improve the workability of the draft Bill. including the removal of section 19(2)(b) which controversially includes in the definition of discrimination behaviour which "offends or insults" another person.
Section 19(2)(b) has generated concern about the protection of free speech since the publication of the draft Bill, including from Arts Law in its submission to the Senate Committee.
The Coalition members of the Senate Committee have issued a dissenting report which argues that the entire draft Bill should be scrapped.
The Federal Government has promised a response to the report soon.