Archive for the ‘Civil Rights’ Category

Cyclists escape helmet fines

Nerendra Jeet Singh, a Sikh, went to court in New South Wales (NSW), Australia over a bicycle helmet fine. He escaped the fine, arguing that his identity and religion are of prime importance. In Queensland, Jasdeep Atwal challenged a helmet fine in court. The Sikh community has led Queensland to reform the helmet law to add a religious exemption. […]


Introduction A subject of current controversy in Australia is the role of governments in individuals’ choices about protecting themselves against disease and injury. Concerns have been expressed about infringement of civil liberties and possible adverse effects of preventive medical treatments that governments are urging, immunisation for example. People are rightly demanding the full scientific knowledge […]

Compulsory Bicycle Helmets: Unfair Discrimination

Wearing of helmets has been compulsory for cyclists in Australia for years, but how many people know that reports of the Federal Office of Road Safety, in 1987 and 1998, recommend them for occupants of motor vehicles too? Hoping that helmet wearing would reduce serious head injury and satisfied that the costs and inconvenience to […]

Medical Doctors, and the Compulsory Helmets Law

Introduction by Peter van Schaik Medical Doctors have frequently claimed the right to enforce compulsory helmets on cyclists, to protect the public purse. For example in his review entitled “The Effectiveness of Bicycle Helmets: A Review” (1995), Dr. Michael Henderson says: “There remains a proportion of the riding population who are opposed to legislation requiring […]

Civil Liberties Considerations

A. AUSTRALIA 1. Lionel Murphy, address to ALP National Conference, 1967 Every generation has to fight over and over again the battle for our fundamental rights and liberties and this generation has to do that also. We Australians tend to think that our civil rights are beyond question. In recent times, almost every one of […]

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