ADF International

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Corneloup, Caleb v. Launceston Corporation

Date of most recent action: 19 Aug 2016

Street evangelist wins victory to preach publicly

What’s at Stake

Freedom of Speech


Caleb Corneloup applied for a permit to preach in one of the open areas in the City of Launceston, in the State of Tasmania. Corneloup wanted to preach on political matters such as creation and evolution being taught in schools, same-sex ‘marriage’, abortion, and other teachings from a Christian perspective. Launceston laws prohibit preaching in open areas—which amounts to almost the entire city—without a permit.

The city refused Corneloup’s application based on the law prohibiting preaching or political speaking in order to keep the open space a pleasant place, even though other expressive activity was allowed in open areas.

Corneloup and ADF International’s allied lawyers at the Human Rights Law Alliance challenged the decision by the city and the law itself in the Federal Court. They argued that the decision to deny Corneloup a permit was ‘not properly made, was discriminatory on the ground of religion, and was invalid by reason of the implied freedom of political communication in the Australian Constitution.’

The Federal Court agreed with Corneloup, preserved his right to speak freely, and granted him permission to preach in the streets of Launceston.

Our Role in the Case

ADF International provided funding to Corneloup’s lawyers at the Human Rights Law Alliance.

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