ACL in the news

Religious organisations speak out against Victorian Labor's equality plan


John Robertson - Christian Today



Following the new Victorian Labor government's announcement of an equality portfolio under the responsibility of Martin Foley, a coalition of prominent national religious organisations has raised objections shortly after the publicisation of Foley's plans in the media on Sunday.




Abortion

Most women wouldn’t have abortions if they just saw this instead


Sarah Terzo - Life News



“There was a time before ultrasound that we didn’t realize that movement happened before 16 – 17 weeks. But now with ultrasound you can see that little seven week baby moving, just slight movement, and it’s the first movement of life.




Children & Family

Who takes priority in the case of children living in care?


Marie-Therese Gibson - On Line Opinion



Calls for adoption reform in recent weeks have focused on the intercountry adoption system. Prime Minister Abbott vowed to cut time frames for intercountry adoptions from five years to one year. Debra Lee Furness, founder of Adopt Change, was awarded NSW Australian of the Year for her work to improve access to intercountry adoption in Australia.




Classification

It hurts to know someone could get a thrill from my abuse: Why I petitioned to have Grand Theft Auto V removed from Target


Nicole - Melinda Tankard Reist blog



I was in the sex industry in my early 20s. But instead of the virtual world of GTA V – the abuse I suffered, while not as extreme as those in the game, was terrifyingly real. It has taken me almost ten years to get my life back on track and to recover from the sexual violence and abuse I faced. I still live with flashbacks, nightmares, and crippling depression and anxiety.




Education

Corruption probe in Vic education dept


News Ltd



Victoria's corruption watchdog is investigating the state's education department amid reports top officials siphoned money meant for needy schools into a secret slush fund.




Human Rights

Northern Ireland ‘conscience clause’ consultation launched


The Christian Institute



A consultation on introducing a ‘conscience clause’ in Northern Ireland has been launched today, in a move welcomed by The Christian Institute. Paul Givan wants to table a Private Member’s Bill to amend equality legislation in light of the Ashers Baking Company case, involving a Christian family facing court for refusing to provide a pro-gay marriage campaign cake.




Indigenous

Indigenous infant mortality rate in Victoria twice that of non-Indigenous peers


Samantha Donovan - ABC



New research has found that an Indigenous baby living in Victoria is twice as likely to die before the age of one as its non-Indigenous counterpart.




Marriage

The wealth of nations depends on the health of families


Patrick Fagan - News Weekly



Even if all the market reforms of the Washington think tanks, the Wall Street Journal and Forbes Magazine were enacted, we’d still need to kiss the Great American Economy goodbye. Below the level of economic policy lies a society that is producing fewer people capable of hard work, especially married men with children. As the retreat from marriage continues apace, there are fewer and fewer of these men, resulting in a slowly, permanently decelerating economy.




Overseas Aid

'Fair go, Joe': Billboard targets foreign aid cuts


Peggy Giakoumelos - SBS



It might be the season for giving, but there's one present that's unlikely to go down well with Federal Treasurer Joe Hockey. Charity groups are planning to raise enough money so that they can place a mobile billboard out the front of Joe Hockey's North Sydney electoral office.




Politics

The bush betrayed


Jack Wilkie-Jans - On Line Opinion



It's been a breath of fresh air to see on the ABC the documentary mini-series highlighting the history and changes of the National Party. One of the saddest things to see however, and we didn't need a television show to tell us this, is that the National Party is but a shadow of its former self and essentially a cheer-squad nowadays for the Liberal party, playing not much more than a symbolic role within the Coalition.




Greens win seat of Prahran in Victorian Parliament

Richard Willingham - The Age



The Greens have won their second seat in the Victorian Parliament, with the seat of Prahran falling from the Liberals on Tuesday night. The Victorian Electoral Commission confirmed shortly after 8pm that the Greens won the seat by a slim margin of 261 votes.




Religious Freedom & Persecution

British 'Vicar of Baghdad' claims ISIS beheaded four children for refusing to convert to Islam


The Independent



ISIS have beheaded four Christian children in Iraq for refusing to convert to Islam, a British vicar based in the country has claimed.




Pope calls on world to end Islamic State barbarism

David Singer - On Line Opinion



Pope Francis has considerably upped the ante in enlisting spiritual leader of the world's Orthodox Christians - Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I – to sign a joint Common Declaration demanding an end to international indifference regarding Islamic State barbarism being perpetrated against religious minorities in Syria and Iraq.