Civil liberties law: Safeguarding the human rights in Australia
Civil liberty is defined as independence from arbitrary government or individual intervention in one's endeavours (most often used in the plural - civil liberties). Many democratic countries explicitly safeguard civil freedoms in their constitutions, but not Australia. Freedom of conscience, freedom of the press, freedom of religion, freedom of expression, freedom of assembly, the right to security and liberty, freedom of speech, the right to privacy, the right to equal treatment under the law and due process, the right to a fair trial, and the right to life are all examples of civil liberties. Other civil liberties include the right to possess property, defend oneself, and maintain one's bodily integrity.
Civil liberties laws are constitutionally approved legal rights guaranteed to citizens that cannot be modified by the government except in extreme situations such as a political emergency. The concept of civil liberty is the cornerstone of modern democratic constitutions. While democratic countries around the world give constitutional freedom and civil liberties, international institutions such as the UN also validate them.
Historical evolution of civil liberties law
The issue of liberty has been addressed in civil liberties law since Greek times. The Greeks held that liberty as a principle applied only to free men. As a result, women and slaves were denied political liberty. Furthermore, the Greeks thought that a good king would secure his people's freedom and liberty.
The Greek idea dominated for a long time until the arrival of Social Contract thinkers such as Hobbes, John Locke, and Rousseau. They believed that the law, not the ruler, regulated human matters on Earth. As a result, the notion of civil freedoms was embedded in the rule of law.
Modern civil liberties received a concrete form with the advent of democratic constitutions. The Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen (1789) and the United States Bill of Rights (1791) were two modern legal writings that embraced the notion of liberty.
Finally, with the adoption of the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights in 1948, civil liberties gained international recognition.
What are the freedom rights in Australia?
There are five fundamental freedoms in Australia: freedom of speech, association, assembly, religion, and movement.
·Freedom of speech
Australians are free, within the limitations of the law, to say or write what we think about the government or any other topic, privately or publicly. We do not restrict the media and are free to criticise the administration without fear of being arrested. Free speech stems from facts, not rumors, and the purpose must be constructive rather than destructive. There are laws in place to protect a person's reputation and integrity against false information. There are laws prohibiting people from saying or publishing things that encourage hatred towards others based on their culture, ethnicity, or heritage. Freedom of expression is not a license to cause harm to others.
·Freedom of association
We have the right to join any legally recognised organisation or group. We have the option of joining a labor union or a political party. Having and debating different points of view promotes a healthy and strong democracy.
·Freedom of assembly
We have the right to meet with other people in public or private areas. For legal, social, or political goals, we can congregate in small or big groups. The ability to protest and demonstrate is a recognised form of free speech. Protesters must not be aggressive or violate laws by assaulting individuals or trespassing on private or public property. People can change governments peacefully through elections rather than through bloodshed.
·Freedom of religion
Australia has no official or governmental religion. Although the law does not impose any religious teaching, religious practises must comply with the law. We are free to practice any religion we want. We also have the option of not having a religion.
·Freedom of movement
We have the freedom to travel to and from all states and territories. We can leave and return to Australia whenever we choose. Some migrants' visas may be subject to conditions until they become Australian citizens.
A career in Civil Liberties Law in Australia
Civil rights and civil liberties lawyers practice in areas of the law that often fall under the First Amendment's freedom of expression, assembly, and religion (civil liberties). Civil liberties lawyers are united in their desire to use the legal system to create a more equal society. To that aim, they work on a variety of problems ranging from campaigning for judicial recognition of civil liberties to litigation-based civil rights activism. Civil liberties lawyers work for non-profit organisations both domestic and international, federal, state, municipal, and international government agencies, and public interest legal firms with a focus on civil rights.
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