Aged care and retirement accommodation
Everyone should be able to feel safe and be treated with dignity in their accommodation. Accommodation providers have a legal responsibility to make sure that all staff and everyone who uses their services are treated fairly and with respect.
How does the law protect me?
Under the Equal Opportunity Act 2010, accommodation providers have a positive duty to eliminate discrimination, sexual harassment and victimisation as far as possible.
Services run by or for the Victorian Government have additional responsibilities under the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities.
The law protects you from discrimination
If you live in aged or retirement care, it is against the law for the service provider or staff to treat you unfairly because of a personal characteristic that is protected by law, such as your:
- sexual orientation.
Discrimination could include:
- refusing to accept your application because of your sexual orientation
- staff making derogatory comments about your religious beliefs or race
- evicting or terminating your residency because of perceived mental health issues
- not accepting your application because you use a wheelchair or mobility scooter.
Find out more about discrimination.
The law protects you from sexual harassment
Sexual harassment is also against the law. Find out more about sexual harassment.
It is also against the law to victimise a person, which means treat them badly or unfairly, because they have made a complaint about discrimination, sexual harassment or vilification, or have helped someone else to make a complaint.
You can make a complaint
Get help from the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission.
You can make a complaint to us if you think you have experienced:
If you wish, someone else can make a complaint for you. Find out how the Commission helps people resolve complaints.
We can also give you information about your rights.
Are there any exceptions to the law?
There are some exceptions in the Equal Opportunity Act that mean it’s not against the law to discriminate in particular circumstances. For example, discrimination is not against the law if there is a real risk to someone’s health, safety or property.
Find out more about exceptions.
My human rights under the Charter
Every Victorian has the right to equal and effective protection against discrimination, and to enjoy their human rights without discrimination.
Victoria’s Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities contains 20 basic rights that promote and protect the values of freedom, respect, equality, and dignity.
The Victorian Government, local councils and other public authorities must always consider Charter rights, including the right to equality, when they create laws, develop policies and deliver their services.
Find out more about your human rights under the Charter and what to do if you think they have been breached.