• Whitson v State of Queensland (Department of Education) [2023] QIRC 202

    The case concerned an appeal of an internal review decision in circumstances where the appellant was absent from their workplace due to illness and/or injury for five years. In the internal review, the decision-maker addressed the appellant’s human rights and acknowledged that the requirement to keep the contents of a specific letter confidential would limit the right to freedom of expression (section 21) pursuant to the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld), which included the freedom to impart information of all kinds. The decision-maker considered that such a limitation was reasonable and demonstrably justifiable in accordance with the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld). The Tribunal agreed and noted that, to the extent required to conduct his appeal, the applicant had been able to discuss the matters subject of the grievance and the decision: [115].
  • Turay v Workers’ Compensation Regulator (No 2) [2023] ICQ 019

    The case concerned two applications and a second appeal of a decision by the Queensland Industrial Relations Commission regarding a claim for worker’s compensation after termination of employment as a registered nurse. The claim had been made some sixteen months late due to the appellant having suffered incapacitating mental health issues. The appellant had submitted that her human rights were being violated by a denial of a right to appeal. The Court considered that international conventions did not form a part of the domestic law of Queensland and that the appellant’s reliance on them was misplaced. Accordingly, the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) did not recognise a human right to an appeal. The appellant had already had her appeal; the right would only be relevant to the interpretation of the Industrial Relations Act 2016 (Qld); the legislation was clear and could not be construed consistently with any right to reopen a concluded appeal. The Court ultimately struck out the appeal.
  • TCD v Director General Department of Justice and Attorney-General [2023] QCAT 277

    This case concerned an application for review of the respondent’s decision to issue a negative notice (that is, deny the applicant a Blue Card) under the Working with Children (Risk Management and Screening) Act 2000 (WWC Act). Member Davies noted a number of competing rights protected by the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) including the applicant’s right to privacy and reputation (section 25) and right to take part in public life (section 23), as well as right of every child to the protection that is needed by the child (section 26). Member Davis ‘narrowly’ came to the view that the applicant should be issued a Blue Card, but did not otherwise explain what consideration or weight was given to each of those competing rights in reaching that view.
  • TAJ (costs) [2023] QCAT 133

    This case related to a decision about costs in a remitted hearing. In considering whether the Tribunal was bound to follow the doctrine of precedent, Member Gordon was prompted to consider whether the Tribunal was exercising judicial functions or administrative functions. The Tribunal considered that where a tribunal acts in an administrative capacity, it is less likely that the doctrine of precedent would apply. Member Gordon noted that the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) had prompted the Tribunal to consider when it is acting in an administrative capacity rather than judicial capacity but made no further reference to the legislation.
  • Surtie Enterprises Pty Ltd T/A Greenbank Gardens Manufactured Home Park [2023] QCAT 228

    The case concerned an application for the renewal of an exemption from the operation of specified provisions of the Anti-Discrimination Act 1991 (Qld) in order to operate a manufactured home park reserved for people over 50. In making its determination to not grant the renewal, the Tribunal acknowledged that the application affected the right to recognition and equality before the law (section 15) and property rights (section 25) under the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld).
  • ST v State of Queensland (Department of Education) [2023] QIRC 004

    In deciding an appeal against a decision to transfer a public service officer made pursuant to s194(1)(d) of the Public Service Act 2008 (Qld), the Commissioner addressed a contention that the decision-maker failed to give proper consideration to a number of human rights, as evidenced by a lack of any express reference to human rights in the transfer decision. Citing Hutchison v State of Queensland (Queensland Health) [2021] QIRC 317, the Commissioner expressed a view that it was not always necessary for a decision-maker to write in great detail about the consideration of human rights particularly if the decision-maker has come to the conclusion that human rights are not interfered with: at [65]. The Commissioner rejected the lack of express reference to human rights as grounds rendering a decision unreasonable and, following that line of reasoning, determined there was no utility in returning the transfer decision to the decision-maker to reissue the transfer decision with an expanded explanation regarding the consideration of human rights: at [66]. The Commissioner did find the transfer decision was not reasonably open to the decision-maker, but for other reasons.
  • SS v Office of Fair Trading [2023] QCAT 215

    The Appellant was a Security Officer and Crowd Controller registered under the Security Provider Act 1993 (Qld). His licence was suspended for the duration of criminal proceedings where it was alleged that he had, during the course of performing security patrols, instructed an intoxicated woman to enter his car whereupon he sexually assaulted her. The Appellant filed an application to stay the criminal proceedings against him, including on grounds that the decision maker, in deciding to suspend his licence, failed to consider his human rights. He argued that the suspension itself was a breach of his human rights and the presumption of innocence: at [22]. The Tribunal considered a suspension was a justifiable limitation of an individual’s human rights when balanced against matters of public importance, including the protection of the public and the preservation of faith of the community that persons who hold a Security Officer/Crowd Controller licence are appropriate persons to hold such a licence: at [24] - [25]. The stay application was dismissed.
  • SK (A Child) v Commissioner of Queensland Police & Anor [2023] QDC 65

    The case concerned a challenge to a domestic violence protection order regarding a relationship between two 12-year-olds. In considering whether the appellant was afforded procedural fairness, the Court briefly mentioned ss 31-33 of the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld), namely, the right to a fair hearing (section 31); rights in criminal proceedings (section 32); and rights of children in the criminal process (section 32). On this point, the Court decided that the appellant was not afforded procedural fairness as the proceeding to final orders was premature, the short adjournment did not afford the appellant child a reasonable opportunity to obtain representation by a lawyer, and the appellant was not afforded a reasonable opportunity to be heard. The Court ultimately set aside the protection order.


Subscribe to RSS

Research Area