Privacy Law and Policy Reporter
Compiled by Graham Greenleaf
The Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) and Australian Health Ethics Committee (AHEC) of the National Health and Medical Research Council have been given a reference by the Attorney-General, Daryl Williams, and the Minister for Health, Dr Michael Wooldridge, to examine jointly the legal and ethical issues surrounding the protection of genetic information. Following a discussion paper and public consultations, the ALRC and AHEC are to report by 30 June 2002 on whether laws are needed to:
The AHEC reference is under s 35(3)(c) of the National Health and Medical Research Act 1992.
Brisbane Coroner’s Court has been told that two Perth police officers unlawfully accessed details about Andrew Petrelis, a man on the Western Australian witness protection program who later died in suspicious circum-stances. Western Australian police said checks into the use of the police computer found the two police officers had accessed information relating to a car registered in the name of the assumed identity given to Petrelis after he entered the witness protection program in May 1995 when he agreed to give evidence for the Crown in a drugs case. Petrelis was found dead in Queensland a few months later, before testifying. The inquest continues.
Source: AAP, 6 February 2001.