Anti-discrimination exemptions should no longer apply to government-funded religious organisations, Amnesty International says.
Amnesty called on the government to remove the exemptions which currently allow religiously affiliated employers to fire employees if they identify as LGBTI.
The charity also put forth the idea of federal legislation governing human rights, like the UK’s Human Rights Act, or a religious freedom act as an alternative.
The religious freedom review’s report has still not been made public, despite being delivered to the government back in May.
Emma Bull, Amnesty’s advocacy program manager, said funding provided by a secular government should not be allowed to “contribute to discrimination”.
She hopes that with the recent by-elections now held that there should be no further delay to the release of the review.
“We called for its immediate release when the panel completed their review,” Bull said.
“It’s now been more than two months since the Prime Minister got the review from the panel. It’s hard to see how they can justify waiting much longer to release it.”
Bull welcomed a call for a religious discrimination act.
“It’s a funny position for Amnesty to find itself in to be in furious agreement with conservative politicians, but we do believe that a lack of a religious freedoms act is the obvious gap in our human rights architecture,” Ms Bull said.
“We’ve got freedom from racial discrimination but not on religion. While Australia is a secular society it’s an international human right that should be protected.”
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull established the review into religious freedoms in Australia in response to the passage of marriage equality legislation in Australia.
When the review was submitted to the government, it was reported that it would recommend religion fall under the same protections as race, age, disability and sexual orientation.