Human Rights Case Law Project

Published cases referring to the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld)

The UQ/Caxton Human Rights Case Law Project is an initiative of the UQ School of Law and Caxton Legal Centre Inc. The aim of this project is to ensure that practitioners, researchers, students and members of the public have easy access to all published cases that refer to the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld). 

Case notes for all published decisions that mention the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) will be added to this page. Please be patient with us – we are a small team so the case notes might not appear immediately, but we will do our best to complete them as quickly as possible.

This project is run by Professor Tamara Walsh (UQ Pro Bono Centre) and Bridget Burton (Caxton Legal Centre).

Current team members are: Laura Rowswell (Student Leader), Liisa Kuru (Assistant Leader), Rory Brown, Ben Cornwell, Carolyn Farago, Laura Hall, Anouk Hendriks, Thorida Kim, Sophie Little, Kano Nawagawa, Max Punin, Hannah Retief, Genevieve Rule, Imogen Ryan-Kerr, and Georgia Williams.

Many thanks to our founding members: Elizabeth Aisi, Linden Peacock and Tulli Seton.

Case notes are available by keyword below and in alphabetical order.

Case notes by keyword

Children and Families
Civil Procedure
Criminal Law and Corrective Services
Cultural rights
Domestic Violence
Education, Training and Employment
Health, Mental Health and Guardianship
Planning and Environment
Political Freedoms
Privacy and Confidentiality
Public Law Considerations
Tenancy and Social Housing

Education, Training and Employment

  • WW v Director-General, Department of Justice and Attorney-General [2021] QCAT 7

    This case concerned an application for review of the respondent’s decision to issue a negative blue card notice to the applicant, WW. In ordering that the respondent’s decision be set aside, the Tribunal considered the applicant’s right to a fair trial (section 31), the applicant’s right to not be tried or punished more than once (section 34), and the rights of children (section 26(2)) under the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld).
  • ZB v Director-General, Department of Justice and Attorney-General [2021] QCAT 82

    This case concerned an application for review of the respondent’s decision to issue a negative blue card notice to the applicant, ZB. The Tribunal found that the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) did not apply to the proceedings, as they were commenced before the legislation came into effect. However, the Tribunal noted that if the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) did apply, its decision would potentially impact ZB’s right to freedom of expression (section 21), right to take part in public life (section 23), right to a fair hearing (section 31), and right not to be tried or punished more than once (section 34), as well as the rights of children (section 26(2)).
  • Zhao v State of Queensland (Queensland Health) [2022] QIRC 185

    This case concerned an appeal by the applicant against the respondent’s decision not to permanently appoint the applicant within Queensland Health. The applicant filed an appeal with the Industrial Registry. The Industrial Relations Commission noted that, in making the decision, particular attention was paid to Directive 09/20 (fixed term temporary employment). The Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) is considered under 4.5 of the Directive. There was no substantial discussion of human rights.


Public Law Considerations

  • Wagners Cement Pty Ltd & Anor v Boral Resources (Qld) Pty Ltd & Anor [2020] QSC 124

    The right to a fair hearing, specifically the right to have all judgments and decisions made by a court or tribunal publicly available (Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) s 31(3)), was examined by the court. This arose because there was a possibility that confidential information would be inadvertently disclosed at the conclusion of the trial. The court found it unnecessary to examine this right in depth as the proceedings began before the commencement of the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld), but held that there will be circumstances where justice cannot be served if everything must be done in public.
  • Whiteley v Stone & Anor [2021] QSC 31

    This case concerned an application for judicial review of a decision of the Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy to cancel the applicant’s certificate of competency. The application was dismissed and the Court found that section 48 of the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) was not engaged when interpreting sections 12, 14 or 48 of the Judicial Review Act 1991 (Qld).
  • William Peter Hulbert v Queensland Racing Integrity Commission [2022] QCAT 130

    The case concerned a finding by the Queensland Racing Integrity Commission that the applicant had engaged in misconduct. The Tribunal determined that the limitations on the applicant’s human rights were reasonable and demonstrably justifiable.
  • Witthahn & Ors v Wakefield (Chief Executive of Hospital & Health Services & Director General of Queensland Health) & Ors [2022] QSC 95

    This was a costs decision. The applicants challenged the directives of the Chief Executive of Queensland Health to make COVID-19 vaccination compulsory for ambulance officers and nurses in public hospitals and sought relief and remedies under ss 59(2) and 58 of the Human Rights Act 2009 (Qld).
  • WMJ [2021] QCAT 283

    This case concerned a review of the guardianship and administration appointments for WMJ. The Tribunal applied the General Principles in section 11B(3) of the Guardianship and Administration Act 2000 (Qld), including, in particular, the principle that the adult is entitled to the same human rights and fundamental freedoms that apply to those with capacity.
  • Young v Dawson (No. 2) [2022] QCAT 48

    The applicant was a police officer who was charged with four disciplinary allegations and found guilty by the respondent. The Tribunal noted that it was required under the Human Rights Act 2019 (Qld) to have regard to the applicant’s human rights, and found that the applicant’s right to freedom of expression (section 21) and right to not have his reputation unlawfully attacked (section 25(b)) were potentially limited. The Tribunal was satisfied that limitations on these rights were consistent with the proper purpose of upholding public confidence in the police service and ensuring police discipline. 



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These case notes are intended to provide summarised general information only. They do not constitute legal advice and should not be relied on as such.  If the subject matter of any case note relates to a transaction or matter of particular concern, you should seek your own independent formal legal advice from an admitted legal practitioner.  Please note, UQ does not offer legal services to the public.