ACL compiles a daily media monitoring service of stories of interest to the Christian constituency relating to children, family, drugs and alcohol, marriage, human rights, religious freedom etc. Visit the ACL’s website each day to see what’s of interest in the news. Please note that selection of the articles does not represent ACL endorsement of the content.



 









Bioethics

Senators call for ban on sterilising disabled children without their consent


Oliver Laughland - Guardian





Sterilising children with disabilities without their consent should be banned, unless it can be proven that the child's capacity to consent will never develop, an Australian Senate committee report has recommended. The report also says that families taking disabled children overseas for sterilisation should face criminal charges.










Inquiry recommends laws banning parents travelling overseas to sterilise children with disabilities

Jessica Marszalek - News Ltd





New laws making it illegal to travel overseas to sterilise children with disabilities have been recommended after an inquiry revealed Australians are going to New Zealand, Thailand and India for the controversial procedure. A parliamentary inquiry has been examining claims people are being sterilised against their wishes or are being tricked into the procedure, as well as delving into the issues faced by careers.












Scientists switch off rogue chromosome that causes Down Syndrome in lab cells

AFP





Gene scientists said that in lab-dish cells, they had found a way to switch off the rogue chromosome that causes Down syndrome. The breakthrough opens up the tantalising goal of therapy for Down Syndrome, they said, cautioning that years of work lie ahead before this aim is reached - if, in fact, it is attainable.














Charities & NFP

Should Christian charities take gov't cash


Jerry Newcombe - WND





There is a strong link between faith, the Christian faith in particular (in all of its various stripes), and doing good – including feeding the hungry, clothing the naked and providing shelter. It has been true in the past, and it is true in the present. This is a mandate that comes from Jesus Himself, and the impact of Christian charity on civilization has been enormous and positive. What the church does it will continue to do, and should do without any assistance from the government. In some cases, it does this despite resistance from the government.
















Children & Family

Labor launches assault on Abbott parental leave scheme


SBS





Some of Australia's poorest women would be forced to subsidise wealthy new mums under the coalition's paid parental leave scheme, Families Minister Jenny Macklin says.
















Drugs & Alcohol

Drugs in prison readily available, inquest into Anthony Van Rysewyk death finds


Paul Bibby - SMH





Inmates at the country NSW prison where a young man died from a heroin overdose were "readily able to access illegal drugs" because of inadequate security around visits to the facility, a coroner has found. And corrective officers were not trained to detect the symptoms of drug use, and allowed the obviously drug-affected inmate to be locked in his cell where he died some hours later.










Drug supply rife and inmates 'stoned every day' in privately-operated state prison, Coroner finds

Peter Bodkin - The Daily Telegraph





Heroin and other illegal drugs were readily available in one of the state's privately-operated prisons where inmates were able to spend virtually every day "stoned" on illicit substances, a coroner has said.
















Environment

Queensland Government takes back decision to ban plastic bags


International Business Times





The Newman Government in Queensland has changed its mind on a proposed plastic ban due to fear of voters' retaliation. One day after announcing the plastic ban was being considered as part of the state's waste minimisation strategy, Environment Minister Andrew Powell has apparently had a change of mind.
















Euthanasia

Euthanasia Bill under pressure in New Zealand


Reissa Su - IBTimes





If the End of Life Choice Bill was withdrawn from the ballot, the debate over its legalities may be extended until election year, 2014. Some Labour members feel the bill could cause a negative reaction from conservative voters that will affect the party's election campaign.


















Health

Aged care crisis - Australia's greatest shame


Tristan Ewins - On Line Opinion





Last night ABC's Lateline lifted the lid on an Aged Care Crisis which I have been trying to draw attention to for many years . In light of the revelations arising from the Lateline program, we will begin this article by recalling the basic substance of that recent (July 15th ) story.














Human Rights

More than 5,000 children have been killed in Syria's two-year conflict: NGO


Agence France-Presse





The UN's special envoy on children in war was in Syria for talks on Monday, as concern mounts over the rising child death toll in the bloody two-year conflict. Six children were among 29 people killed in a devastating army bombardment of five villages in the northwest as residents prepared to break the daytime fast observed by Muslims during the holy month of Ramadan, a watchdog reported on Monday.






Marriage

Queen gives OK to gay marriage in Britain


AAP







Britain legalised gay marriage Wednesday after Queen Elizabeth II gave her royal assent to a bill approved by MPs, paving the way for the first same sex weddings in 2014.






Politics

Greens slate ALP 'carbon mandate'


David Crowe - The Australian





Labor has unleashed a political assault on the Greens over their vow to vote down a cut in the carbon price as Kevin Rudd seeks an election mandate for the reform in the hope of shoring up his party's vote at the expense of its one-time alliance partner. The Prime Minister's top ministers turned on the Greens yesterday for opposing the plan to cut the cost of living, seeing it as proof of an "intransigence" that should be rejected at the ballot box.








Refugees

Kevin Rudd flags changes to asylum seeker policy


Judith Ireland - SMH





Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has flagged a three-step approach to tackling the flow of asylum seeker boats, including possible changes to the Refugee Convention, as a second boat disaster in a week resulted in more asylum seeker deaths. It also comes as a third asylum seeker boat is reported to be sinking north-east of Christmas Island.










Syrian crisis is the worst since Rwandan genocide, UN official says

Will Ockenden - ABC





The UN High Commissioner for Refugees says he has not seen anything on the scale of the Syrian refugee crisis since the genocide in Rwanda two decades ago, which killed 800,000 people in three months.










Border patrols at breaking point over asylum boats

Cameron Stewart - The Australian





Navy insiders say there is "a growing and burning anger" among sailors on the frontline as they struggle to respond to the spiralling number of deaths and sinkings flowing from the government's failed asylum-seeker policies. The warning comes as the nation's border protection system teetered on the edge of dysfunction last night, with detention facilities on Christmas Island overflowing from the recent influx of asylum-seekers and yet another emergency on the high seas as the navy rushed to rescue a sinking asylum-seeker boat with 80 people on board.
















Religious Freedom & Persecution

Syria, Lebanon and Christian genocide


Joseph Puder - Front Page Mag





The destinies of Syria and Lebanon have been intertwined since the days of French colonial rule, in between the two world wars. It is for this reason that the ongoing civil war in Syria has had its impact on Lebanon. Lebanon is more divided on the issue of the Syrian uprising than any other country in the region.














Sexualisation of Society

Dance teacher Grant Davies charged with 37 extra child sex offences


Emma Partridge - SMH





A high-profile Sydney dance teacher accused of taking hundreds of naked photographs of female students and grooming them for sex has been charged with an extra 37 child sex offences, police say. Grant Davies, a former co-director of RG Dance, based in Sydney's inner west, did not appear before Burwood Local Court on Wednesday to face a total of 47 charges.
















Other

Transgender boy's camp 'unnatural,' restrictive, say Christian leaders


Tyler O'Neil - Christian Post





Christian leaders say a camp encouraging boys to act and dress like girls is "unnatural," "horrifying," and restrictive to young boys, taking away their freedom of expression at a young age. For the last three years, a boy's camp has featured makeup classes, flower hair decorations, and a beauty pageant. Camp "You Are You," an annual weekend family camp, caters to "gender non-conforming and transgender biological boys," according to photographer Lindsay Morris, who published shots of these activities on her website.














This ‘frail young girl’

Stephanie Convery - Overland





Last Friday, on her sixteenth birthday, Pakistani child rights activist Malala Yousafzai made her first speech to the United Nations. Yousafzai was shot by the Taliban on 9 October 2012 because of her campaigns for compulsory education and the right for girls to attend school. A bullet hit her above her left eye and grazed the side of her brain, smashing part of her jaw and skull, but missing enough of the vital organs that her life was saved.










Malala Yousafzai urged by Taliban to come back, join madrassa

Zee News





Days after Malala Yousufzai made a passionate appeal at the UN for the education of children, the Taliban on Wednesday asked the teenage activist to return to Pakistan and join a madrassa in the restive northwest. Adnan Rashid, a Taliban fighter wanted for an attempt to assassinate former President Pervez Musharraf, wrote a letter to Malala, who was shot in the head in a militant attack last year.