Commonwealth Consolidated Acts

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Offensive behaviour because of race, colour or national or ethnic origin

  (1)   It is unlawful for a person to do an act, otherwise than in private, if:

  (a)   the act is reasonably likely, in all the circumstances, to offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate another person or a group of people; and

  (b)   the act is done because of the race, colour or national or ethnic origin of the other person or of some or all of the people in the group.

Note:   Subsection   (1) makes certain acts unlawful. Section   46P of the Australian Human Rights Commission Act 1986 allows people to make complaints to the Australian Human Rights Commission about unlawful acts. However, an unlawful act is not necessarily a criminal offence. Section   26 says that this Act does not make it an offence to do an act that is unlawful because of this Part, unless Part   IV expressly says that the act is an offence.

  (2)   For the purposes of subsection   (1), an act is taken not to be done in private if it:

  (a)   causes words, sounds, images or writing to be communicated to the public; or

  (b)   is done in a public place; or

  (c)   is done in the sight or hearing of people who are in a public place.

  (3)   In this section:

"public place" includes any place to which the public have access as of right or by invitation, whether express or implied and whether or not a charge is made for admission to the place.

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