This Statement should be read with the Australian Bar Association’s Diversity and Inclusion Principles adopted in February 2020.
The Australian Bar Association is committed to zero tolerance of any form of harassment, victimisation and vilification at the Australian Bar and in the legal profession. The Australian Bar Association is committed to the eradication of such conduct from the profession.
The Australian Bar Association recognises the devastating impact that such conduct can and does have, and has had, on victims including causing them to leave the Bar or the legal profession.
The Australian Bar Association recognises the hierarchical structure of the Bar and legal practice create power imbalances which have contributed, and continue to do so, to harassment, victimisation and vilification.
The principles of justice, integrity and equity, which are the best aspirations of the Bar, demand respectful behaviour by all members.
It considers that all Australian barristers are responsible for providing and contributing to a work environment where all (whether barristers, those engaging barristers, employees of barristers or visitors to chambers) are free from harassment, victimisation and vilification.
The ABA encourages its member Bars to work with their members and chambers to:
The Australian Bar Association acknowledges this as a profession wide problem which can only be tackled by all parts of the profession working together to eradicate such behaviour.
Adopted by the Council of the ABA, August 2020.
On 24 July 2020 the Council of the ABA resolved to support the following amendments to the Sex Discrimination Act 1984