Performance measure 3.5: Legal and policy advice on criminal justice and national security frameworks
Reforms to legislative and policy frameworks relating to criminal justice and national security frameworks are managed to address emerging threats and challenges while upholding the rights of individuals.
This performance measure was achieved.
3.5.1 Stakeholder and client satisfaction greater than 80% in relation to:
3.5.2 Government and external stakeholders are actively engaged in discussions on policy development and improvements
3.5.3 Qualitative analysis of the effectiveness of policy advice in maintaining and improving the operation of Australia’s criminal justice and national security frameworks
- Portfolio Budget Statements 2020–21, Outcome 1, Program 1.2, page 33
- Corporate Plan 2020–24, page 32
3.5.1 In response to questions related to this target in the department’s stakeholder survey, 89% of respondents rated our effectiveness positively and 85% rated our efficiency positively. A detailed explanation of the stakeholder survey methodology and results is at Appendix 2: Methodologies.
In 2020–21, we progressed reforms to Australia’s criminal law and national security framework to ensure the safety and protection of communities and to respond to new and emerging threats. We worked with other agencies, state and territory law enforcement and criminal justice stakeholders in a range of practical ways including through legislative and Cabinet scrutiny work, working groups and forums and informal or ad hoc means. Comments indicated that respondents found our engagement to be constructive and professional. Areas for improvement included better management of time pressures and ensuring better internal coordination of views.
3.5.2 and 3.5.3 We evaluated both performance targets 3.5.2 and 3.5.3 through qualitative assessment. The legislative development of extended supervision orders for high-risk terrorist offenders was selected for assessment from a sample list using detailed selection criteria. An assessment panel considered how effective the policy advice was in achieving its intended effects. Further information on the assessment processes is at Appendix 2: Methodologies.
The proposed extended supervision order scheme would protect communities from the risk terrorist offenders pose after their release from custody for a serious terrorism offence. On 3 September 2020, the then-Attorney-General introduced the Counter-Terrorism Legislation Amendment (High Risk Terrorist Offenders) Bill 2020 that is now being considered by the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security.
In leading the development of the bill, we provided policy advice in 3 ways:
- advice to the Attorney-General to support the administration of the legislation
- advice to the Department of Home Affairs to support their policy development role
- engaging with state and territories to learn from their experiences and respond to their comments and concerns.
The bill involved significant consultation across government and with states and territories. State and territory jurisdictions were key partners in these reforms and their views shaped the scheme. In particular, the department drew on the experiences of New South Wales in the development of their parallel post-sentence scheme, the Terrorist High Risk Offender regime. Collaboration occurred through the Legal Issues Working Group of the Australia-New Zealand Counter-Terrorism Committee.
The panel graded the policy advice provided by the team as 'good' or above in all 4 evaluation areas of context, analysis, advice and action. In particular, the panel found that the team considered and advised on legal risks and bolstered its advice through constructive collaboration with the Department of Home Affairs and state and territory counterparts. The panel members recommended that the policy project could be strengthened by more reflection and analysis on how to measure success.