By Hon RS French*
Judges today are asked to perform a variety of non-judicial, administrative functions, such as issuing search warrants or preventative detention orders. But are these the kinds of things that judges should do? Responses to this question are often “knee-jerk”; they are not part of the judicial function and the judge can become an agent of the Executive. In this article, Chief Justice French refers to the doctrine of the separation of powers in the Australian context to show that such knee-jerk responses are not helpful; it is important to develop a sense of the history and traditions of the judicial role and its proper limits and a sense of those things which are incompatible with it.
The full article can be accessed here: “Executive toys: Judges and non-judicial functions” (2009) 19 JJA 5.
* Hon RS French, Chief Justice of the High Court of Australia.