Finally we’re able to give you an update on how things are developing in our efforts to prosecute the Victorian government (and individuals) over the 2020 Hotel Quarantine disaster.
We informed you that, on the 14 February 2022, we lodged an application in the Victorian Supreme Court for an order to require WorkSafe to comply with (what we say) is the required investigative process under the Act. Details are here: https://selfemployedaustralia.com.au/notabovethelaw/
The first ‘Directions’ Hearing has now been conducted with an ‘Order’ issued setting out dates by which both our and WorkSafe’s lawyers are required to lodge documentation. That is, we’re now in the legal ‘administrative’ process that will eventually lead to a court hearing. The next Directions hearing is listed for 27 July 2022. We believe a court date is likely to be set at the 27 July hearing. Here’s the Order setting out the dates.
Now it’s a ‘long haul’
After all the effort to raise the membership funding for the case, securing the legal team and initiating the legal process, we are now in the ‘long haul’ phase of the legal process. There won’t be any major ‘new’ developments to announce as we work through the legal process. So—“sorry”! Nothing ‘dramatic’ for some time!
We again thank everyone who has become an SEA member enabling us to fund both the legal effort and the necessary related general campaigning. With the budget secured for the anticipated legal costs, we are continuing to work on membership funding for the broader, supportive ‘Not Above the Law’ campaign. All efforts continue!
As we’re now in the ‘long haul’ legal process, it’s good to remind ourselves why we are doing this. Remember that, at this stage, our legal process seeks to require WorkSafe to do its job and explain why it is only prosecuting the Department of Health and not the individuals we say should also face prosecution.
Victoria’s top radio journalist, Neil Mitchell, probably best explained what concerns the community. On 4 October 2021 Neil said the following on Melbourne radio 3AW:
He referred to “… this enormously controversial decision not to prosecute personally, Daniel Andrews or any of these ministers, over the catastrophic breaches in hotel quarantine …”
(that) “… raise crucial questions, that must be answered about the process that led to the decision not to prosecute personally, but only go after the health department as an entity.”
Mitchell asked “…Who made the decision not to prosecute the Ministers or the heads of departments or in fact the Premier…?”
Our Supreme Court action cuts to the heart of the “…enormously controversial decision not to prosecute personally, Daniel Andrews or any of these ministers…” As far as we’re concerned, we’re not only fighting for justice but also for our democracy. No-one should be above the law.