Current Law Journal Content
Washington & Lee Law School
Current Law Journal Content
an index to legal periodicals
Alternative Law Journal
Volume 35, Number 2, 2010
Wild law: The philosophy of Earth Jurisprudence
Wild law or Earth Jurisprudence is an emerging theory of law and governance that seeks to evolve law in a fashion that recognises our relationship to the broader Earth community. In this article, the author introduces and articulates some fundamental concepts being developed by theorists in this area. The author also discusses the recent constitutional amendment in Ecuador that granted nature the right to exist, persist and flourish.
The right to health: The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
This article argues that the development of the right to health and mental health in international human rights law critically informs the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. In particular, the continuity and complementarities between civil and political rights on the one hand, and economic, social and cultural rights on the other, underscores the Convention's injunction to provide a comprehensive range of health, mental health and social services that are acceptable to the person, culturally appropriate, and provided on a voluntary basis. This article discusses the application of the Convention with a focus on the developing content of the right to health, the adoption of a social model of health in the Convention, and the significance of Article 24 on the right to enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health.
'Sticks and stones': The lack of disability vilification law in Australia
Bridget Cullen Mandikos and Amber Vario
Over the past 20 years, efforts have been made to ensure vilification on grounds of race, religion and sexual orientation is unlawful within Australia. Vilification on grounds of disability, however, has been ignored. The enactment of disability vilification laws would be an important step towards improving the lives of persons with disabilities. Over time, disability vilification laws would discourage the use of offensive and degrading language and assist in reshaping society's perceptions of, and attitudes towards, persons with disabilities.
Prenatal testing, East and west: Regulating disabled foetuses in China and Australia
In an era of advancements in genetic technology, there are increased challenges for policymakers to adapt the regulatory system to ever-changing technologies, which may invoke new social and ethic concerns to the community. This article focuses on the economic, political and social implications of technological advances for both China and Australia in the field of prenatal testing.
The right to home under the Victorian Charter
The Victorian Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities requires public authorities to act compatibly with human rights in exercising discretionary powers. Recent decisions of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal illustrate how tenants in public housing may invoke these rights to oppose an eviction application by a public authority, particularly an application based on a no-reason notice to vacate.
Where will the children live? Arrangements for separated families in Australia
This article reports on a pilot study of family law post-separation arrangements and their effect on the children of separated families. It compares informal agreements with court ordered living arrangements and asks whether informal living arrangements were more 'workable' than court orders from the perspective of the children affected by them. It discusses the 2006 amendments to the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth), and questions whether current family law policy is moving in the right direction in its emphasis on non court ordered solutions to living arrangements after family breakdown.
L-Plates, logbooks and losing out: Regulating for safety -- or creating new criminals?
Many Australian states now require substantial hours of supervised driving before a learner can take their licence test. The new requirements are important for safety, but the unintended consequences include criminalising and excluding young people already disadvantages by economic, geographic and cultural factors.
A HECS Rebate? Ways to attract and retain graduate lawyers in rural, regional and remote communities
Over the past couple of decades, there has been a steady decline in the proportion of solicitors practising in rural, regional and remote communities, leading to a critical shortage of legal services in many non-metropolitan areas. The Law Council of Australia has proposed a range of strategies to address the problem including consideration of a HECS Rebate Scheme targeting law graduates who agree to undertake work in an RRR area. This article documents the findings of an empirical study which surveyed three cohorts of Practical Legal Training students across two Queensland universities. The study surveyed the levels and effects of HECS debt on graduate employment choices as well as canvassing potential uptake of an HRS. The article concludes that an HRS is unlikely to offer an effective long-term solution to the recruitment and retention problems faced by RRR communities.
Reigniting the access to justice debate
The access to justice Inquiry and Report by the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee has provided clear directions for reform. Of particular interest are the Report's recommendations relating to Justice Reinvestment, graduate training, recruitment in community legal centres and community legal sector funding.
Consumer debt-related legal problems
A recent Victorian government report, Courting Debt, looked at the advice-seeking behaviour of people experiencing consumer debt, debt-related legal problems, and those who have legal proceedings initiated against them. The report recognised the importance of improving access to debt assistance services, including legal and financial counselling.
Dealing with employment discrimination
This brief follows the progress of a woman as she attempts to resolve a complaint about discrimination in employment. In doing so, it illustrates some of the advantages and disadvantages of the current model of resolving discrimination complaints.
Sport and the Law: Equal P(l)ay
This work connects the discussion about the lack of women on corporate boards with the lack of women on the boards of National Sporting Organisations (NSOs). It also highlights the lack of accountability and transparency of NSOs in terms of gender-based reporting. The disappearance and poor numbers of women on NSO boards is described and it is suggested that there is unequal funding of women's/girls' programs and unequal pay of female athletes. It is recommended that government funding of NSOs be tied to gender-based outcomes and reported in the Womens' Budget Statement in line with the Legacy Report called for at the 5th World Conference on Women and Sport held in Sydney in May 2010.