International Travel Ban Illegal?

Seat0B

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This Guardian Australia article (not pay-walled) reports that a think tank called LibertyWorks has commenced a legal challenge in the Federal Court against the international travel ban. The case approach is that the Biosecurity Act does not give the Minister the right to ban all Australians from leaving the country indefinitely - rather it grants the power to prevent a single individual leaving for up to 28 days. They have asked for an expedited hearing in early 2021.

I know a number of AFFers have been saying this for a while, so I thought I'd highlight the article and start a thread on this very important topic.
 

HappyFlyerFamily

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This Guardian Australia article (not pay-walled) reports that a think tank called LibertyWorks has commenced a legal challenge in the Federal Court against the international travel ban. The case approach is that the Biosecurity Act does not give the Minister the right to ban all Australians from leaving the country indefinitely - rather it grants the power to prevent a single individual leaving for up to 28 days. They have asked for an expedited hearing in early 2021.

I know a number of AFFers have been saying this for a while, so I thought I'd highlight the article and start a thread on this very important topic.
Well if it turns out to be true, you can be sure the Government will ask the Opposition to pass a new law to give effect to the travel ban (or find another way in the current laws).

The thinktank will need some Aussies to sign up to give it a legal right to raise this in court.
 

mviy

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Well if it turns out to be true, you can be sure the Government will ask the Opposition to pass a new law to give effect to the travel ban (or find another way in the current laws).
Indeed. If they anticipate losing the case they will either try and make such changes before the judgment is handed down or try to seek a delay in the order taking effect to give them time to pass legislation.
 

theblank

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is there really a travel ban? I know we have to make an application to depart australia, but I know plenty who have and heard of none being rejected. Most of those I know have gone to visit family.

Seems to me that he main problem is getting back, not leaving.
 

mviy

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I applied to leave and was rejected and they told me bluntly not to bother reapplying for the same reason as they would ignore it. No appeals. No nothing. Asked politicians to intervene and they claimed that they couldn’t.
 

N860CR

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I applied to leave and was rejected and they told me bluntly not to bother reapplying for the same reason as they would ignore it. No appeals. No nothing. Asked politicians to intervene and they claimed that they couldn’t.

Its not too far off a dictatorship... how we can prevent our own citizens from leaving is absolutely beyond me. Even forcing people to “apply for permission” takes it too far.
 
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Pushka

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is there really a travel ban? I know we have to make an application to depart australia, but I know plenty who have and heard of none being rejected. Most of those I know have gone to visit family.

Seems to me that he main problem is getting back, not leaving.
Only 1/3 of applications have been approved. Some have taken it to Supreme Court and failed.
 

N860CR

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I applied to leave and was rejected and they told me bluntly not to bother reapplying for the same reason as they would ignore it. No appeals. No nothing. Asked politicians to intervene and they claimed that they couldn’t.

This attitude from the federal government doesn’t surprise me. In the few dealings I’ve had with border force (not sure who’s administering departures at the moment) has revealed a department with absolutely no oversight and unlimited powers.
 

Seat0B

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Its not too far off a dictatorship... how we can prevent our own citizens from leaving is absolutely beyond me. Even forcing people to “apply for permission” takes it too far.
Yes it smacks of iron curtain era practices to me too. Even internal border passes to go from state to state, compulsory check in apps and police road blocks sound like things the Stasi would have done in the 1980s in East Germany. Australian citizens are effectively prevented from freely leaving the country, and the way the caps/flights/hotel quarantine system works in reality means that Australian citizens are having a mighty tough time entering the country as well. It's certainly not a free right of entry. However, cricket players, tennis players, celebrities and other similarly essential workers don't seem to have the same difficulties, coming and going pretty much as they please without the impediments that bother the 'little people". Perhaps it's actually more a case of Animal Farm....
 

Flashback

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Yes it smacks of iron curtain era practices to me too. Even internal border passes to go from state to state, compulsory check in apps and police road blocks sound like things the Stasi would have done in the 1980s in East Germany. Australian citizens are effectively prevented from freely leaving the country, and the way the caps/flights/hotel quarantine system works in reality means that Australian citizens are having a mighty tough time entering the country as well. It's certainly not a free right of entry. However, cricket players, tennis players, celebrities and other similarly essential workers don't seem to have the same difficulties, coming and going pretty much as they please without the impediments that bother the 'little people". Perhaps it's actually more a case of Animal Farm....

Money talks.
 

HappyFlyerFamily

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Wonder how the case is going?

Australia has removed the travel ban to NZ last night apparently


New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says she will reveal a date for the start of a new trans-Tasman travel bubble on April 6.

"We don't have a date for you," Ms Ardern said in a news conference.

She said more time was needed to set up the final framework of an agreement and determine arrangements such as contact tracing measures and managed isolation facilities.

Last night the federal government amended the legislation relating to Australia's travel ban to exclude people flying to New Zealand, paving the way for the travel bubble.

Previously Australians had to apply for an exemption to travel anywhere overseas, including New Zealand.
 

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Seat0B

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This Guardian article from about a week ago foreshadows that the case would be referred to the Full Court of the Federal Court, to avoid an appeal from a decision of a single judge to the Full Court.

Rightwing thinktank’s challenge to Australia’s travel ban threatens biosecurity laws, Coalition warns

It appears that has occurred so the hearing will now be on 6 May rather than 28 April, before 3 judges instead of a single judge.
And presumably if Liberty Works succeeds, then the Government will simply enact new legislation to prevent Australians from leaving.
 

mviy

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And presumably if Liberty Works succeeds, then the Government will simply enact new legislation to prevent Australians from leaving.
And any legal challenge to that new legislation will take time to be heard and a request to block the new legislation from taking effect till the case has been heard would likely be denied.
 

MEL_Traveller

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And any legal challenge to that new legislation will take time to be heard and a request to block the new legislation from taking effect till the case has been heard would likely be denied.

It depends on what law the Cth is trying to enact and what head of power they try to use.

If the argument is that it is unconstitutional, it might be heard fairly quickly, and here in Australia.
 

mviy

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Our only hope of a quick resolution to this mess is if the court determines that the ban is unconstitutional; and if the Labor opposition, the Greens and other cross-benchers vote against new laws to reimpose restrictions (or the courts block those laws from going into effect and ultimately rule them unconstitutional as well) which seems a highly unlikely combination of events.
 
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jakeseven7

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It depends on what law the Cth is trying to enact and what head of power they try to use.

If the argument is that it is unconstitutional, it might be heard fairly quickly, and here in Australia.

Incorrect. They can easily delay constitutional related matters. Google is your friend.
 

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