Citizenship and a Bill or Charter of Rights

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Citizenship and a Bill or Charter of Rights
Banks, Robin.
Publication Date:
22 Aug 2008
Publication Type:
Paper - Published

In a paper to a Sydney Democracy Forum seminar, Robin Banks spoke of the need for formal human rights protection to complete the democratic jigsaw. In this paper, human rights are characterised as an important but not paramount aspect of ensuring effective representative democracy; an aspect that–in order to be effective–must sit alongside a range of other democratic mechanisms such as fair and equitable electoral processes, a representative parliamentary structure, respect for and protection of the Rule of Law, an independent judiciary, access to effective representation within judicial processes, a free and diverse media, open, accountable and transparent executive processes, a clear balance and division of power between the three branches of government and opportunities to engage in political processes.The paper also highlights the role of human rights as an effective and clear values framework that can guide the conduct not only of governments but of all within a community or society.

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