The Palaszczuk Labor Government has mapped out the path forward towards expunging historical homosexual convictions in Queensland.
Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Yvette D’Ath MP, has tabled a Queensland Law Reform Commission report into the process recommended and has outlined the Government response to that report.
“For the Palaszczuk Government, this has always been a question of how these historical convictions should be expunged, not whether it should be done,” said Mrs D’Ath.
“The QLRC Report recommends creating a framework that would allow eligible people to apply on a case-by-case basis.
“On that and many other substantive recommendations, the Government will adopt this report.”
However Mrs D’Ath identified a number of issues where the government will depart from the report’s recommendations:
• in addition to sexual acts once described as ‘gross indecency’, the framework will also apply to certain public morality offences where the charge related to consensual homosexual activity; &
• the government’s proposed scheme will be limited to historical offences involving consenting adults.
“It is important that Queenslanders are not burdened by the stigma attached to criminal charges and convictions that were made under the laws of a bygone age,” Mrs D’Ath said.
Consultation with stakeholders on draft legislation has now commenced in the anticipation that legislation will be introduced to Parliament in the first half of 2017.