MEDIA RELEASE



Saturday January 24, 2015



The Australian Christian Lobby has welcomed NSW Premier Mike Baird’s intervention in the refugee debate this Australia Day long weekend.



ACL has long-called for an increase in Australia’s humanitarian intake, last year raising a petition of almost 20,000 people calling on the government to do more.



Managing director Lyle Shelton urged the Federal Government to heed Mr Baird’s call for Australia to re-settle more refugees.



“While the government deserves credit for the small increase announced before Christmas, like Mr Baird, ACL believes Australia as one of the wealthiest countries in the world can do more.



“While the federal government has cited the cost of resettling people as a road block, Mr Baird’s reference to the strength of Australia’s largest state’s finances is an indication that Australia has more capacity.”



Mr Shelton said it was revealed in Senate estimates last year that Australia would be saving $2.5 billion over the forward estimates because of closing detention centres in the wake of the halt to people smuggling.



“Islamist extremism in the Middle East has exacerbated the global refugee crisis and Australia should continue to build on its recent good work to prioritise people fleeing religious violence,” Mr Shelton said.



Below are links to recent ACL comment on increasing the refugee intake.



http://www.acl.org.au/2014/12/mr-acl-welcomes-governments-move-to-increase-the-humanitarian-intake/



http://www.acl.org.au/2014/08/government-should-back-nationals-urgency-motion-to-help-islamic-state-victims/



http://www.acl.org.au/2014/08/acl-calls-for-increase-in-humanitarian-intake-for-persecuted-christians/