Australian gov’t ‘ideologically opposed to human rights,’ says commissioner

During her last week as human rights commissioner of Australia, Gillian Triggs said human rights were worsening in the country for women, indigenous persons and homeless people, and most asylum seekers and refugees.







“I think it’s partly because we have a government that is ideologically opposed to human rights,” Triggs told ABC Radio National on Wednesday.

Triggs’ comments come before Australia’s potential induction into the United Nations’ Human Rights Council.
“It is a very, very false endorsement as the competition has dropped out so Australia will be moving into that position almost automatically,” she said.

“There will be no judgment on Australia’s position on human rights,” she lamented.

She also said that Australia lacks and needs its own version of a bill of rights.

“Anything that Canada, North America, the United States, Britain and much of Europe, any government measure, any legislative measure must comply with fundamental human rights,” Triggs said. “We don’t have that in Australia.”

Triggs has been criticized for being too polarizing during her time as human rights commissioner.

“Her actions made her a hate figure for the culture warriors of the political right and a champion of the virtue signalers of the left,” wrote Chris Kenney, associate editor of national affairs at The Australian.

But Triggs said this week that personal attacks against her were just a distraction to the fundamental issues of human rights in Australia.

“There’s been seen [to be] a strategic advantage in attacking the individual rather than attacking the pointed issue,” she said. “That’s particularly unfortunate because I would much prefer a full-on debate about the issue. It just doesn’t achieve anything, the issues remain unresolved.”

By Ray Downs