Minister for Home Affairs and Minister for Justice Jason Clare today said that an R18+ category for computer games was another step closer today with legislation passing the House of Representatives. The legislation passed the House of Representatives without amendment and will now move to the Senate for debate in coming weeks. The reforms bring the classification of computer games into line with existing categories used to classify films. It also makes the Australian classification regime more consistent with international standards. “The R 18+ category will inform consumers, parents and retailers about which games are not suitable for minors to play, and will prevent minors from purchasing unsuitable material,” Mr Clare said.
“The reforms also mean that adults are able to choose what games they play within the bounds of the law.”
The introduction of an R18+ category for computer games has been the subject of extensive public consultation over recent years. The Attorney-General’s Department released a discussion paper on the introduction of an R 18+ classification category for computer games in 2009. They received 58,437 submissions in response with 98 per cent of these supported the introduction of an R 18+ category.
The Bill also has the support of State and Territory Attorneys-General, who agreed to this reform at the Standing Council on Law and Justice meeting in July 2011.
Following the passage of this legislation through the Senate,the States and Territories will pass their own complementary legislation to ensure that R 18+ computer games are appropriately regulated.
Subject to this occurring the national scheme will commence on 1 January next year.
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