Community Television Broadcasting

Through the Television Screen

By Ravneet Kaur

09 May 2022

The launch of the documentary “Trauma: Rights and Remedies” by Civil Liberties Australia in collaboration with Community Television Broadcasting highlights the urgency of the Human Rights Act in Western Australia.

The documentary emphasises on Australia’s broken justice system and social issues including deaths in custody, homelessness, domestic violence, sexual abuse, and disabilities.

Social issues lead to trauma which decides people’s future responses to accidents, threats, and abuse.

Rural Aid Counsellor and community representative Gome Simfukwe said that in traumatic situations, the human brain perceived other people as threats even if there was no immediate threat.

“Trauma is really about what happens to an individual, to a society, to a group of people when you have a situation you cannot control,” Simfukwe said.

According to the documentary, juvenile detention centers treat children unfairly, and their right to education and living is ignored by the justice system.

To prevent traumatic situations and equip society with valid protection against injustices, WA needs a Human Rights Act.

According to Australian Human Rights Commission, Australia is the only western democratic country without any formal Human Rights Act.

The Human Rights Act will provide legal protection to the citizens for their political, social, economic, and cultural rights.

The act will also put checks on the practices of the justice system. The documentary is an exclusive made with CTB and cinematographer, producer, writer and director Simon Akkerman.

What WA can learn from other states?

The Australian constitution offers a smaller number of enforceable human rights.

Australian Capital Territory has already introduced the Human Rights Act in 2004 followed by Victoria in 2006 by introducing the Charter of Rights and Responsibilities Act.

In 2019, Queensland introduced Human Rights Act.

WA needs to follow the trend to provide human rights protection through a legal Act.

Aboriginal deaths in Custody, homelessness, unfair treatment of juveniles in the custody, and human rights violation are testimony to WA’s broken justice system.

Civil Liberties Australia (CLA) is urging the citizens to contact their local politicians and ask about their contribution to the introduction of the Human Rights Act in WA during this Federal election.

CLA is a Canberra-based non-political organisation working for the safety of human rights.

To share your stories with the people, please contact Claremont-based Community Television Broadcasting.