Quick Q&A on offensive racist behaviour and racial vilification

What is ‘racial vilification’?

Vilification is, by a public act, the incitement of hatred towards, serious contempt for or severe ridicule of a person or group of persons on the ground of race. Vilification on the basis of race and other attributes is unlawful under the Anti-Discrimination Act 1991 (Qld).

What is a public act?

A public act includes communication made to the public by speaking, writing, printing, displaying notices, broadcasting, electronic means amongst other things. Comments and videos shared on social media may be found to be a public act.

What can I do if I have been racially vilified or have experienced offensive racist behaviour?

You can seek legal advice on your options. Caxton Legal Centre provides advice on anti-discrimination law which includes vilification. If you wish to bring a complaint about the conduct you have 12 months from the date the conduct occurred to bring a complaint to the Queensland Human Rights Commission.

What can I do if I see or read comments on social media that others have been racially vilified?

You can call the behaviour out, report it on social media. Be an active by-stander and let others know that their behaviour is harmful. You can find more information on the websites below.





The blog post Quick Q&A on offensive racist behaviour and racial vilification is produced by Caxton Legal Centre and is intended to give general information about the law in Queensland as at July 2020. The content of this blog post does not constitute legal advice, and if you have a specific legal problem, you should consult a professional legal advisor.