Australian Civil Liberties Union




The Australian Civil Liberties Union, which was founded in 1980 and has about 250 members, investigates and takes up matters involving arbitrary government, police conduct, freedom of speech, invasions of privacy and freedom of association; gives general advice on citizens' rights; campaigns for law reform;and gives assistance in court proceedings.

The ACLU publishes Your Rights, the most commonly used layman's guide to the law in Australia. More than 500,000 copies of this pamphlet have been sold or given away since it was first published. About 2500 free copies of Your Rights  2002 were sent to libraries and MPs etc.

A review in the Law Institute Journal said that "Your Rights 1999 is an extraordinary publication- a must read for just about everyone."

Recent activities of the ACLU include providing assistance this year for a landmark appeal to the full Federal Court in a case involving censorship of the Internet, taking up various cases of alleged police misconduct, commenting on some aspects of the Hollingsworth case, and making representations on issues such as anti terrorist legislation. The ACLU has also made policy representations to the Federal and State Governments and/or has had its views published in news items or in letters to the editor on issues such as new powers for ASIO, police powers to "frisk" for weapons, "dobbing" in drunk drivers, privacy and the internet, the use of contempt of court charges to silence critics of the government, and censorship of some issues by the mainstream media. Representatives of the ACLU have appeared on TV in relation to some of these issues The ACLU made a significant donation to the sponsors of a History Conference held in the USA in 2004 and made large donations to various magazines ,including a new magazine "The Independent Australian"

The ACLU can be contacted on (03) 93478671, or (03)95341314 or mobile on 0405819015. The 2004 edition of Your Rights is on the ACLU website To join the ACLU forward a cheque for $20-00 to the ACLU, PO Box 1137, Carlton, Vic. 3053.Some ACLU members may not have recieved newsletters No 129  and No 130 both of March 2003.If you did not recieve these newsletters  please contact the ACLU

The ACLU President, John Bennett, worked for the Victorian Legal Aid Commission and its predecessors for 1974 to 1996 and was the secretary of the Victorian Council for Civil Liberties (now Liberty Victoria) since it was founded in 1966 until 1980 when he became President of the ACLU.


Contents of Your Rights

Australian Civil Liberties Union