Relevant legislation

The following legislation is relevant to Swinburne's AccessAbility Action Plan. 

Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth)

The act is a federal law that aims to:

  • eliminate discrimination against people living with disability
  • promote community acceptance of the principle that people living with disability have the same fundamental rights as all members of the community
  • ensure, as far as practicable, that people living with disability have the same rights to equality before the law as other people in the community.

The act prohibits unlawful discrimination against people living with disability and promotes inclusive approaches, rather than the provision of separate or ‘parallel’ access and services whenever possible.

United Nations Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disability (2006)

Countries that have signed the convention commit to developing and carrying out policies, laws and administrative measures for securing the rights of persons with disabilities as recognised in the convention, and to abolish laws, regulations, customs and practices the constitute discrimination (Article 4). The convention also notes the importance of combating stereotypes and prejudices, and promoting awareness of the capabilities (the ability) of people living with disability (Article 8).

Note: Australia ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disability on July 17 2008. Australia was one of the first Western countries to do so.

Equal Opportunity Act 2010 Victoria

The objectives of the act are to encourage the identification and elimination of discrimination, sexual harassment and victimisation and their causes, and to promote and facilitate the progressive realisation of equality.

This act includes directions to employers to make reasonable adjustments for an employee with a disability, or an individual who is offered employment.

Australian Government’s Disability Standards for Education (2005)

States the obligations of education and training providers to ensure students living with disability are able to access and participate in education and training free from discrimination, and on the same basis as other students.

Australian Government’s Disability (Access to Premises-Buildings) Standards 2010

Stipulates set performance requirements for technical specifications to ensure dignified access to, and use of, buildings for people living with disability.

Australian Vice-Chancellors’ Committee Guidelines Relating to Students with Disability (2006)

Provides guidelines for the university sector that can be used as benchmarks for good practice.

Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth)

Governs the employment of all workers. It includes the rights and responsibilities of both employers and employees and employee organisations. It also includes rights and responsibilities pertaining to employees who have a physical or mental disability, and individuals who are carers of a person under 18 years of age who has a disability.