24 November 2014

New laws to protect privacy

| Canfan
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Canberrans will be better protected from unlawful voyeuristic behaviour by new legislation to be introduced into the Legislative Assembly this week, Attorney-General, Simon Corbell, said today.

The Crimes Legislation Amendment Bill 2014 will strengthen prohibitions on indecent behaviour using cameras or other technology. It was one of a range of changes which will provide greater protection from invasions of privacy in response to advances in technology.

“The offences introduced by the Bill, to protect the privacy of individuals, will ensure that the law can appropriately deal with people who indecently engage in behaviour sometimes referred to as up-skirting and down-blousing without the consent of the person being observed, filmed or photographed,” Mr Corbell said.

The Bill also includes changes which prohibit the display of drug paraphernalia such as ice pipes, hash pipes and cannabis water pipes.

“This is the latest step in the Government’s strong, ongoing commitment to a harm minimisation approach to illicit drugs in the ACT,” Mr Corbell said.

Other changes include allowing Victim Impact Statements in the form of a drawing, and a requirement to provide interview-friends for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who are subject to an application or order for a forensic procedure.

“The amendments recognise the particular vulnerability and overrepresentation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in the criminal justice system,” Mr Corbell said.

The Bill makes a number of amendments to clarify regulation of firearms and important safety controls on the use of firearms in the territory. These include:

  • Giving authorised instructors a general authority to use club-owned firearms for the purpose of instruction.
  • Allowing licensees to use their firearms on club shooting ranges where they are registered for genuine reasons other than club use.
  • Clarifying the existing restriction that a young person must be 12 years or older to possess or use a firearm for the purposes of receiving instruction on a shooting range.

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