Innovative discrimination laws


This project evaluates the effectiveness of new mechanisms in the Equal Opportunity Act 2010 (Vic) which were designed to target systemic discrimination and promote substantive equality.


Project background and aims

The Equal Opportunity Act 2010 (Vic) is the most modern anti-discrimination law in Australia and contains a number of innovative mechanisms including a focus on substantive equality, simplified definitions of direct and indirect discrimination, positive obligations on duty holders to address discrimination, a focus on early dispute resolution, direct access to the tribunal, and powers for the statutory agency to encourage compliance with the law. This project will evaluate the effectiveness of those mechanisms in addressing systemic discrimination and promoting substantive equality. The project is being funded by the Victorian Legal Services Board.


The effectiveness of the new mechanisms in the Equal Opportunity Act 2010 (Vic) will be examined through a combination of doctrinal analysis, documentary analysis and empirical legal research. Interviews will be conducted with staff at the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission, and barristers and solicitors practising in Victoria.