MEDIA RELEASE



The Australian Christian Lobby will campaign against a Victorian Labor policy to take away religious freedom from Christian schools and organisations.



ACL’s Victorian Director Dan Flynn said Christian schools and organisations should have the same rights as political parties to select staff who share their ethos and values.



“To take this away from Christian schools is a blow to parents who expect in a free society to be able to educate their children in accordance with the values of the home,” Mr Flynn said.



The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights says that religious freedom is a right that applies in community and in the education of children.



“To say that a school community is not allowed to require all of its staff to share the values and ethos of the community is a breach of the human right of religious freedom,” Mr Flynn said.



“A political party can obviously require its workers reflect the values of the party. The same freedom has always applied to religion and this should not change,” Mr Flynn said.



In the dying days of the previous Labor government, radical changes were made to the Equal Opportunity Act to curtail religious freedom.



After a backlash from the community, the newly elected BaillieuGovernment made good on its election promise and restored religious freedom.



“It is disappointing that Labor is now seeking to revisit these anti-freedom provisions.”



Mr Flynn said 150 Christian leaders at ACL’s leaders’ forum last month at Parliament House with Premier Denis Napthine and Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews were overwhelmingly disappointed to hear Mr Andrews affirm this policy.



ACL is non-party partisan but reserves the right to be critical of policy where necessary.



Mr Flynn said a grassroots online campaign educating voters about the anti-religious freedom provisions of Labor’s policy would be launched this week.