Opening Statement on Australian Citizenship Amendment (Strengthening the Citizenship Loss Provisions) Bill 2018
30 January 2019
Dr David Neal SC, Co-Chair of the Law Council’s National Criminal Law Committee
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"If enacted, the Bill would significantly expand the power of the Minister for Home Affairs (the Minister) to strip a person of their Australian citizenship in certain circumstances. That is, it would significantly lower the existing threshold for when the Executive can revoke the Australian citizenship of a dual citizen who has been convicted of a ‘relevant terrorism offence’.
The Law Council acknowledges the necessity of laws which are enacted to maintain the security of Australia and the safety of Australian citizens. However, it is important that such laws are proportionate and be demonstrated by evidence to meet that objective. Measures to remove citizenship challenge key legal principles on which our democracy was founded, and therefore demand very careful consideration by the Commonwealth Parliament.
The Law Council does not support the current Bill."
You can read the full opening statement below.