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Australia

Monthly Updates

December 2022

Environmental protester Deanna Coco was handed a 15-month jail sentence on 2 December 2022 after blocking a lane of traffic on Sydney’s Harbour Bridge on 13 April. Human rights advocates and a senior UN official have condemned the decision, arguing the disproportionate punishment violates the right to peaceful protest. Coco’s sentence is the first of its kind under new anti-protest laws introduced in New South Wales in 2022, which invoke harsh penalties for non-violent protests. After being denied bail earlier in December and spending 11 days in jail, Coco was granted bail on 13 December, with an appeal motion scheduled for March 2023. The move came as over 100 protesters gathered outside the court calling for her sentence to be overturned. Climate activists have increasingly become the target of these harsh penalties over the last year.

November 2022

Australia has established a National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC), fulfilling one of the Albanese government’s key election promises. In what experts hail as the biggest reform to federal public accountability in decades, the legislation will boost whistle-blower protections and the ability of journalists to protect the identity of sources. The commission will operate independently from the government and will investigate public officials for corruption, including crimes committed before its establishment, and will begin operation by mid-2023.

September 2022

A landmark ruling by the United Nations Human Rights Committee on 23 September found that the Australian government had violated the rights of a group of Torres Straits Islanders to enjoy their culture and be free from arbitrary interference in their private lives by failing to protect them from the effects of climate change. Following a three-year-long legal battle, the UN committee ruled the government's emissions reduction targets and coastal defence measures inadequate. The decision creates a pathway for individuals to lodge complaints when national systems fail to take appropriate measures against climate change. 

August 2022

It was revealed in August that former Prime Minister Scott Morrison had himself secretly sworn in five powerful cabinet ministries between March 2020 and May 2021, giving him unprecedented powers and undermining the conventional cabinet system of government. Appointments were, in many cases, made without the government, public and existing ministers’ knowledge.

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GSoD Indices Data 2012-2021

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Basic Information

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Population Tooltip
25 739 260
System of government
Parliamentary system
Head of government
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese (since 2022)
Head of government party
Australian Labor Party (ALP)
Electoral system for lower or single chamber
Alternative Vote
Women in lower or single chamber Tooltip
38.4%
Women in upper chamber Tooltip
56.6%
Last legislative election
2022
Effective number of political parties Tooltip
4.71
Head of state
King Charles III
Selection process for head of state
Hereditary or election by hereditary state rulers
Latest Universal Periodic Review (UPR) date
20/01/2021
Latest Universal Periodic Review (UPR) percentage of recommendations supported
51.45%
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Human Rights Treaties

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State Party State party
Signatory Signatory
No Action No action
United Nations Human Right Treaties
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights
State Party
International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
State Party
International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination
State Party
Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women
State Party
Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment or Punishment
State Party
Convention on the Rights of the Child
State Party
International Convention on Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families
No Action
International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance 
No Action
International Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
State Party
International Labour Organisation Treaties
Forced Labour Convention
State Party
Freedom of Association and Protection of the Right to Organise Convention
State Party
Right to Organise and Collective Bargaining Convention
State Party
Equal Remuneration Convention
State Party
Abolition of Forced Labour Convention
State Party
Discrimination (Employment and Occupation) Convention
State Party
Convention concerning Minimum Age for Admission to Employment
No Action
Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention
State Party
in
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Early Warning System BETA

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Low risk of democratic breakdown Low risk of democratic breakdown (BETA)
Low risk of democratic backsliding Low risk of democratic backsliding (BETA)

Attributes Over Time

Representative government neutral Representative Government
Jul 2022
Aug
Sep
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Nov
Dec 2022
Representative government neutral Fundamental rights
Jul 2022
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec 2022
Representative government neutral Checks on government
Jul 2022
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec 2022
Representative government neutral Impartial administration
Jul 2022
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec 2022
Representative government neutral Participatory engagement
Jul 2022
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec 2022

GSoD Indices

Regime type
0 10