Open Forum: Does Australia Need Anti-Terrorism Laws?

The Secretary of the Attorney- General’s department Mr Roger Wilkins AO will discuss the challenge of balancing Australia’s Anti-Terrorism laws with the country’s human rights obligations at a special Open Forum at the University of Western Sydney’s Parramatta campus on Thursday May 16.

In the aftermath of the September 11 attacks in America and the 2005 London bombings, the Federal Government passed over 50 Anti-Terrorism laws to help investigate and prosecute terrorism.

Dr Sev Ozdowski, Former Human Rights Commissioner and Director of Equity and Diversity at UWS, will chair the Open Forum.

“Like most Western nations, Australia has adopted a whole range of new anti-terrorism laws in the 21st century, and it’s a delicate balance to protect your country while also maintaining human rights,” Dr Ozdowski says.

“This is especially true in a country like Australia, which is highly multicultural and has a wide range of religions and beliefs which must be protected by our laws.”

“It will be fascinating to hear from Mr Wilkins as he lays out how the government is working to investigate and prosecute terrorists while also making sure innocent people aren’t targeted.”

Prior to his appointment as Secretary of the Attorney- General’s Department, Roger Wilkins was Head of Government and Public Sector Group Australia and New Zealand with Citi.

From 1992–2006, Mr Wilkins was the Director-General of the Cabinet Office in New South Wales where he played a leading role in areas of reform in administration and law.


8 May 2013

Contact: Mark Smith, Media Officer