LibertyWorks Inc has launched a Federal Court challenge to Australia’s international travel ban, stating that Health Minister Greg Hunt has no blanket power to stop all citizens from leaving Australia, only an individual citizen under ministerial powers referred under the Biosecurity Act 2015 (Cth). As outlined in section 96(1), ‘an individual may, for a specific period of no more than 28 days, be required by a human biosecurity control order not to leave Australian territory on an outgoing passenger aircraft or vessel’. LibertyWorks argue that the current Commonwealth travel exemption system contravenes s 96(1).

This challenge follows calls from the Australian Human Rights Commission on Australia’s cap of overseas arrivals being in breach of Article 12 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights regarding Australian citizens being deprived of rights to enter their own country and of Article 10 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child in relation to children and the reunification to family.

The case is expected to be heard in early 2021.

Documentation can be found: https://www.comcourts.gov.au/file/Federal/P/NSD1312/2020/actions