Religious Conviction Discrimination

In the ACT it is against the law for someone to discriminate against you because of a characteristic that you have, or that someone thinks you have, in an area of public life such as employment, education, accommodation, provision of goods and services, clubs.

It is against the law for someone to discriminate against you because of your religious conviction.

It is also against the law for someone to publicly incite hatred toward you, revulsion of you, serious contempt for you, or severe ridicule of you because of your religious conviction.

Religious conviction includes having or not having a religious conviction, belief, opinion
or affiliation, and engaging or not engaging in religious activity.

The definition of religious conviction also encompasses the cultural heritage and distinctive spiritual practices, observances, beliefs and teachings of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and engaging in that heritage.

Example of religious conviction discrimination.

Daniela was offered a job working at a supermarket. She told them she could work any shift except Friday evenings and Saturdays because of the Sabbath. She was then told that she could no longer have the job because her religious beliefs were too hard to accommodate.

Are there any exceptions?

There are some situations in which it is not unlawful to discriminate against someone because of their religious conviction.

It is not unlawful to discriminate against a person on the ground of their religious conviction in relation to the ordination of ministers of religion or the training of people seeking ordination as ministers of religion. It is also not unlawful to discriminate on the ground of religious conviction in relation to employment or study in a religious educational institution, or in relation to work by a religious body in the provision of health services.

To find out more or make a complaint.

For more information or to make a complaint about discrimination, vilification, sexual harassment or victimisation you can contact us by:

We can provide information about the complaint process or refer you to someone who can help you further. We provide free interpreting should you need it.