About Us

The mission of the Free Speech Union of Australia is to protect and promote Free Speech in Australia, as well as defend our members' right to exercise their Free Speech.

Our core values are:

  1. The promotion of Free Speech as the most fundamental of rights: The Australian Free Speech Union stands for freedom of speech, of conscience, and of intellectual enquiry, which we regard as the essential pillars of a free society - the foundational freedoms on which all others depend. We believe that human beings cannot generally flourish outside a free society, which means they cannot flourish in the absence of free speech. Free Speech is not the exclusive domain of any particular group, culture or identity but an inalienable right that should be protected for and by all. It is the primary mechanism that allows us to work together in the large pluralistic society which is modern Australia. If we can't share differing opinions, worldviews, or ideas
    through speech, society simply cannot function.

  2. The protection of Free Speech from opposing cultural trends and increasing legal impingements: Free Speech is currently under assault across all institutions and in particular where it matters most, such as in education, media and the arts. The aim of the Free Speech Union is to restore and protect Free Speech from cultural trends that de-value it and laws that infringe it.

  3. Non-partisan and non-political: Free Speech rights should be universal. As such we take no political stance or view on the content of people's speech. We take no position on the validity of others' opinions, political or otherwise, whether expressed in speech, writing, performance, or in another form. However, we condemn and therefore will not defend speech that causes physical harm, such as incitements to violence.

  4. Defend the Free Speech rights of others, even the most unpopular or disagreeable opinions: We expect our members not to restrict others' Free Speech and will insist that our members and those we come to the defence of will also defend the Free Speech of others, even those they vehemently disagree with. The Free Speech Union believes that if society doesn't uphold the right to express controversial, eccentric, heretical, provocative or unwelcome opinions, then it doesn't uphold Free Speech at all.

  5. Reclaim Larrikinism: This is the Free Speech Union in Australia, and whilst our goals will be broadly similar to other like minded organisations (such as the Free Speech Union's in UK and NZ and FIRE), we will also pay special attention to those aspects of Free Speech that are unique to Australia and are crucial to our culture and values. We recognise that for Australians Free Speech is not just a fundamental right or requirements to flourish and function but an innate part of our cultural identity. We hope to make Australia a place where the Larrikin can flourish once again.

Our vision is for an Australia where people have their Free Speech rights broadly protected and promoted so that the fun and jovial Australian spirit can pervade our lives, be it in the workplace, in civil society, or in politics.