The Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission (“the Commission”) is an independent statutory body with responsibilities under three laws:
- Equal Opportunity Act 2010
- Racial and Religious Tolerance Act 2001
- Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006.
How does it work?
Complaints may be filed in case of discrimination, sexual harassment and victimization or vilification. Complaints relating to a breach the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities is not handled by the Commission, but by the Victorian Ombudsman.
The Commission’s (free) services include:
- a telephone Enquiry Line providing free information on discrimination, victimization, sexual harassment, racial or religious vilification, equal opportunity and the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities (the Charter).
- online delivery of comprehensive information about the Equal Opportunity Act 2010, the Racial and Religious Tolerance Act 2001 and the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities
- education, training and consultancy services on equal opportunity and human rights and responsibilities under the law
- a free, fair and timely dispute resolution service for people who may have experienced discrimination, sexual harassment, vilification or victimization
- seminars that debate and explore issues and developments in equal opportunity and human rights law.
Complaints are resolved through conciliation, to help the complainant and respondent reach an agreement. The Commission does not have the power to make orders or award compensation.
Who can access it?
Anyone with a complaint relating to discrimination, sexual harassment or racial and religious vilification can lodge a complaint. The Commission encourage complainants to try and resolve the matter
Outcomes may include:
- an apology (verbal or written, private or more public)
- financial compensation
- a job reinstatement or reference
- access to a previously denied job opportunity or service
- an agreement to change or stop behaviour
- an agreement to amend or develop policies
- an agreement to undertake human resources and equal opportunity training.
Outcomes are confidential.