The right to equality and the right to be free from discrimination
Australia protects and promotes the right to equality and the right to be free from discrimination through legislation, policies and programs at federal, State and Territory levels.
The Federal Sex Discrimination Act 1984 (Cth), the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth), and the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012 (Cth) promotes recognition and acceptance of the principle of equality between men and women. The Sex Discrimination Act further prohibits, across all Australian jurisdictions, discrimination on the grounds of:
- sex (s 5)
- sexual orientation (s 5A)
- gender identity (s 5B)
- intersex status (s 5C)
- marital or relationship status (s 6)
- pregnancy or potential pregnancy (s 7)
- breastfeed (s 7AA); and
- family responsibilities (s 7A).
In addition, the States and Territories have ensured Australia's compliance with the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women through complementary legislation to prohibit sex discrimination.