Australian policy and legislation

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There is a substantial regulatory framework for access to broadcast television in Australia, particularly in regards to captioning.

For more specific information about the regulation of free-to-air television captioning and subscription television captioning, visit the following pages:

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Australian access regulation

Key legislation in Australia

Australia currently has a variety of legislative and policy instruments which mandate and support accessibility. It remains the case that there is no single, overarching accessibility instrument or regulatory regime, and each media form is subject to its own set of laws and regulators. Like many other countries, accessibility instruments and regulation face the challenge of media convergence.

For those interested in reading more details about Australian policies please visit the following sections:

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Complaining to the Australian Human Rights Commission

What access issues can be complained about to the AHRC?

The Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) administers the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth) (DDA), which is the primary piece of Australian legislation which makes disability discrimination illegal.

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Complaining to the Australian Communications and Media Authority

What access issues can be complained about to the ACMA?

The Australian Communications and Media Authority has regulatory jurisdiction over television, radio, the internet, and telecommunications. Television is the only medium that has formal requirements and so the ACMA will only hear complaints about access to television services.

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Government to 'immediately' move to improve access to media


Stephen Conroy, Minister for Broadband, Communications, and the Digital Economy, today released the ‘Investigation into access to electronic media for the hearing and vision impaired: Media access review final report’, and promised that the Commonwealth Government will “move to immediately implement the Report’s recommendations”.

The Media Access Review began under the Howard Government, and encompassed issues surrounding captioning, audio description, cinema and DVD accessibility, and emergency notification. The ‘Media access review final report’ proposed many positive recommendations, including:

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