Sydney, 5 June, 2018
Federation of Indian Associations of NSW (FIAN) is pleased that NSW Government has decided to amend section 20D of NSW Anti-Discrimination Act. FIAN is a key and founder member of Keep NSW Safe team, which has worked actively, effectively and collaboratively with all stakeholders over last several years to achieve this spectacular result. http://www.keepnswsafe.com/
This will PROTECT DIVERSE COMMUNITIES from individuals who incite or threaten violence against people based on their race, religion, sexuality and HIV/AIDS status, and will carry a maximum three-year jail sentence and a fine of $11,000. The legislation will create a new offence in the Crimes Act of publicly threatening or inciting violence against people on the these grounds.
The path of success was difficult, because a few ministers were not keen to amend section 20D, but active work by ministers like Ray Williams and Mark Speakman has overcome the resistance.
I was made aware of this development by Multicultural Minister on 26 May, 2018, when he addressed a multicultural community forum in Strathfield, but was requested to not make it public. I kept my word.
It is indeed great to see NSW Government has listened to the concerns of our communities and responded to them in a positive way. Nobody can be allowed to harm the harmony among the communities in NSW. Punishment will be given if anyone tries to incite violence against others.
“The new laws send a very clear message to offenders that we will not tolerate behaviour which risks people’s safety”, Mr Ray Williams, Minister for Multiculturalism said, and we wholeheartedly support him.
Attorney General, Mark Speakman’s press Release is here. Mark Speakman press release on 20D
Thank you to Premier, Gladys Berejiklian and NSW Government, especially Minister for Multiculturalism, Ray Williams and Attorney General, Mark Speakman for this much needed and overdue action.
Dr Yadu Singh
Federation of Indian Associations of NSW (FIAN)