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IMPLEMENTATION OF REPORTS AND IMPACT OF WORK

The ALRC has no direct role in implementing its recommendations. There is no statutory requirement for the Australian Government to respond formally to ALRC reports. However, the ALRC monitors major developments in relation to issues covered in its past reports. It is not uncommon for implementation to occur some years after the completion of a report.

During 2018–19 the Australian Government took steps to further implement Elder Abuse—A National Legal Response (ALRC Report 131, 2017). On 2 April 2019 the Minister for Senior Australians and Aged Care, Ken Wyatt AM made the Quality of Care Amendment (Minimising the Use of Restraints) Principles 2019, which will amend the Quality of Care Principles 2014 from 1 July 2019 to include specific requirements relating to the use of physical and chemical restraint in the aged care sector. The amended principles will partially implement the ALRC’s recommendations in respect of restrictive practices (Recs 4–10 to 4–11) by providing, for example, that physical restraint be treated as a last resort.

The Australian Government has also passed legislation in the last year (Family Law Amendment (Family Violence and Other Measures) Act 2018 (Cth)) that substantially implements recommendation 16–5 (amendments to section 68T of the Family Law Act) from Family Violence—A National Legal Response (ALRC Report 114, 2010).