Rainbow Territory media release 12 March 2019

12 March 2019 – MEDIA RELEASE – for immediate release

Rainbow Territory stands in solidarity with those who face discrimination in the NT and calls for Anti-Discrimination reforms to speed up following recent allegations of racial segregation in Alice Springs.

Following recent allegations of racial segregation in an Alice Springs hotel, Rainbow Territory calls on the NT Government to speed up promised reforms of the Anti-Discrimination Act. The group provided a submission to the government in January 2018, and they want a representative complaints process included in reforms.

“The recent exposure of alleged racial discrimination in Alice Springs uncovers the high levels of interpersonal and systemic discrimination experienced by Aboriginal people in the Territory.”

“A representative complaints model is a key part of a workable Anti-Discrimination Act, and a mature NT that addresses systemic discrimination.”

“Representative complaints allow for the protections that already exist to be enlivened, rather than be window dressing.”

“The case at the Ibis Styles Alice Springs Oasis shows how individuals can be discriminated against in the provision of accommodation services, and in this case, an individual may be powerless to make a complaint against a global hotel chain like Ibis.”

“Rather than just relying on individuals complaining to the Anti-Discrimination Commission, a representative complaints model better responds to the systemic nature of discrimination and allows complaints to be brought on
behalf of multiple people at once.”

“We want the Anti-Discrimination Commission to be able to act on issues where discrimination, victimisation, or vilification can impact a group of people collectively rather than a single individual, the Alice Springs example is a case in point.”

“Those who are most vulnerable to discrimination are often those least empowered in society, which reduces the likelihood of them pursuing individual complaints in situations where they have been discriminated against.”

“To ensure the complaints model is a robust one, processes should be designed to ensure that the representative body making the complaint truly advocates for the community it claims to represent.”

Rainbow Territory’s submission on the discussion paper to modernise the Anti-Discrimination Act (NT) can be found here.

Media comment: Jane Black, Rainbow Territory member

Formed in September 2014, Rainbow Territory is an unfunded Northern Territory community group that advocates for the human rights of Northern Territorians who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (‘LGBTIQ’). Rainbow Territory aims to develop a safer, fairer and a more inclusive Northern Territory.

PDF version: MEDIA RELEASE Anti Discrimination Act NT_representative complaints 12 March 2019.docx