Scenic Rim

1 - Sex & Gender theory education

The controversial Safe Schools program introduces gender theory to schoolchildren as though it were fact. Tasmania and NSW have withdrawn Safe Schools and similar type programs but have had to exercise vigilance to ensure that gender theory is not included in the school curriculum under different names.

- Does your party have a policy on whether gender theory should be taught in schools and, if so, could you please state what that policy is?

- Does your party commit to withdrawing the controversial Safe Schools program and other similar programs already being taught?

The Federal Labor party has stated its intention, if elected to government, is to provide federal funding to the Safe Schools program. In this event, will your party:

- Refuse federal funding and maintain a commitment to keep gender theory programs out of the classroom?

 

2 - Abortion

The Law Reform Commission (LRC) is currently considering abortion laws in Queensland and is expected to report in the second half of 2018.

- Does your party propose to change current abortion laws in Queensland and, if so, how? Could you please outline your party’s policy on abortion?

- Will you adhere to this policy for the entire 56th parliament?

- If your party forms government, will you allow Members of your party to pursue abortion law reforms through Private Member’s Bills?

 

3 - Euthanasia

Various state governments have debated the introduction of laws to allow assisted suicide or euthanasia.

- Will your party commit to ensuring that euthanasia is not legalised in Queensland?

- If your party forms government, will you allow Members of your party to pursue Euthanasia law reforms through a Private Member’s Bills?

 

4 - Outdoor advertising

Advertising standards are currently supervised under a system of self-regulation administered by the Advertising Standards Bureau (ASB), which relies on the voluntary compliance of advertisers. While it sounds admirable on paper, this system of self-regulation in practice fails to compel compliance from advertisers, whose commercial interests are better served through displaying sexual imagery. There are no penalties, no fines, no consequences for advertisers who consistently delight in flouting community standards and triumphing publicly over their critics.

- Will your party commit to a policy to ensure that outdoor advertising is ‘G’ rated?

- Will your party commit to introducing legislation to penalise advertisers who repeatedly breach the code?

 

5 - Prostitution

The University of Queensland has found that the legalisation of brothels in Queensland has failed to curb the growth of prostitution, with up to 90 per cent of Queensland’s prostitution industry remaining unregulated and illegal. Sex trafficking continues to be a problem. Internationally, policies discouraging demand for sexual services are proving to be the most effective way of limiting both the size of and the harms resulting from prostitution. The policy approach known as the “Nordic model” comprises three essential elements:

buying sexual services becomes a criminal offence. The message that purchasing sexual services is socially unacceptable can be reinforced with public education campaigns.

selling sexual services is decriminalised

funding and support is provided for exit strategies to assist prostituted persons to leave this industry.

- Will your party commit to a meaningful examination of this successful policy approach to prostitution with a view to implementing a similar approach in Queensland?

 

6 - Human Rights Bill

In the event that a ‘Yes’ result is returned in the current national opinion survey on same-sex marriage, and same-sex marriage becomes law:

- There has been some discussion concerning the introduction of a Bill to protect human rights. What is your party’s policy on this issue? How will your party ensure that such a bill gives equality to the rights of freedom of freedom of thought conscience and religion and freedom of expression so that they do not become subservient to the right of non-discrimination?

- Specifically how will your party protect the freedom of thought conscience and religion and freedom of expression of the substantial number of Queenslanders who will not want to use their professional and/or artistic skills to be involved in same-sex marriages?

Section 124A of the Anti-Discrimination Act 1991, a so-called “hate speech” provision has  been used recently to suppress freedom of speech.  In a free and democratic society, commentators should have the freedom to argue points of view without the threat of coercive action against them if they cause offense. Will your party commit to an examination of the impact that s124A has had on free speech and consider amending or removing this section?

 

7 - Child safety – Foster system

There are currently 9000 children in foster care in Queensland. Recent figures show that there have been only 2 adoptions.

- What is your party’s policy with regard to foster care? Will your party commit to reform the Queensland foster care system and adoption procedures to provide permanency and stability for children in foster care?

 

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*Has signed a pledge to allow abortion at any stage of any pregnancy

Reference: http://www.fairagenda.org/qld_candidate_pledge

 

The Greens Party have not supplied responses to the questions so these responses have been referenced from their website here: https://greens.org.au/

 

1 – SEX AND GENDER THEORY EDUCATION

The Greens want radical gay and transgender sex education to be funded by the State Government –https://greens.org.au/news/qld/greens-attack-safe-schools-funding-cut

 

2 - ABORTION

From Greens party platform document - https://greens.org.au/policies/qld/reproductive-rights

Greens would Enact legislation that makes termination of pregnancy through appropriate surgical or pharmaceutical procedures a safe and legal choice for women, including by:

a) Repealing all provisions of the Queensland Criminal Code and other sanctions regarding termination from Queensland legislation, including sections 224, 225 and 226 of the Queensland Criminal Code 1899.

 

3 – EUTHANASIA

The greens support the introduction of euthanasia legislation in Qld. Greens' plan to legalise access to voluntary euthanasia and will introduce a private members’ Bill to allow voluntary euthanasia in Queensland. https://greens.org.au/search/node/euthanasia  

 

4 – OUTDOOR ADVERTISING

No answer.

 

5 – PROSTITUTION

No answer.

 

6 – HUMAN RIGHTS BILL

No answer

 

7 – CHILD SAFETY – FOSTER SYSTEM

From Greens website: https://greens.org.au/magazine/national/extend-support-foster-care

The Australian Greens believe that children and young people have a right to a loving and nurturing environment. We also consider that prevention strategies play a significant role in setting children and young people up for lifelong success and giving them a good start in life.

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The Labor Party response has been received from Jackie Trad, Deputy Premier of Queensland in communication to the Australian Christian Lobby State Director. 

 

1 - Sex & Gender theory education

The Palaszczuk Government is committed to ensuring our state schools are safe and inclusive places to learn for all students. Regardless of a student’s gender, race, disability, appearance or sexual identity they are welcome in our state schools, without discrimination.

The Federal Government committed $8 million over three years to run the Safe Schools Coalition program. That funding is now finished Queensland state schools therefore no longer have a relationship with the Safe Schools Coalition program.

Queensland state schools will continue to provide support to LBNTIQ+ students. As needed, schools will engage organisations such as True Relationships and Reproductive Health to provide additional advice and support to schools.

The Department of Education does not mandate or endorse individual programs or initiatives. Principals, in consultation with parents and the school community are in the best position to make decisions about the most appropriate programs to meet the needs of their students.

 

2 – Abortion (Termination of Pregnancy)

 Your members would be aware of the history of the two Bills by the member for Cairns, Mr rob Pyne MP, and the subsequent withdrawal of those Bills. The Palaszczuk Government recognised that those Bills did not give appropriate resolution to a range of issues related to law reform in this area, and subsequently referred the issue to the Queensland Law Reform Commission (QLRC).

The QLRC is an independent statutory body that makes recommendations to government on areas of law which are the subject of specific inquiries.

The QLRC was asked to have regard to a number of matters in preparing its report to government, including:

a)    Existing practices and services in Queensland concerning termination of pregnancy including those provided by medical practitioners, counsellors and support services

b)    Existing legal principles in relation to termination practices in Queensland

c)    The Queensland Government’s commitment to modernise and clarify the law in relation to termination of pregnancy

d)    The consultation with stakeholders that occurred during the Parliamentary Committee’s consideration of the first and second Bills

e)    The views of experienced clinical practitioners

f)     The views of the Queensland community

g)    Legislative and regulatory arrangements in other Australian and international jurisdictions.

The Premier has made a commitment that in the next term of government, Labor will bring forward a Bill to Parliament based on the recommendations of the QLRC Report. The QLRC is required to report of the Attorney-General by 30 June 2018.

As you can see from the Terms of Reference, regard will be had by the QLRC to the consultation with stakeholders that occurred during the Parliamentary Committee’s consideration of the first and second Bills, and the views of the Queensland community, when preparing its report to Government.

Labor Party Members of Parliament will be free to exercise a conscience vote when voting on the Bill. I am limited in any further information I might be able to provide until the QLRC process is concluded.

 

3 - Euthanasia

The issue of voluntary euthanasia as assisted dying is a very serious and emotive issue and, understandably, generates significant debate within the community, with strong views being held on both sides.

The Palaszczuk Government respects the notion of supporting people and improving the lives of all Queenslanders and also understands that people deserve the best quality of life throughout their lives.

For this reason, there are many different options available in the form of advanced care planning and palliative care. These services provide physical, psychological and emotional, as well as spiritual support for patients and their families and friends. Providing these services allows for the patient to be as free as possible from unnecessary suffering and assists in maintaining dignity and independence.

To support the provision and coordination of personalised care for people at the end of their lives, the Palaszczuk Government has released Queensland’s Statewide strategy for end-of-life care 2015 and A charter for care of adult patients as the end of life in May 2016.

These documents can be viewed online on the Queensland Health website.

With regard to the legislation of voluntary euthanasia, it is important to remember that there remains significant concern about legislation of euthanasia and the ability of government to ensure that the lives of the vulnerable, the elderly, and those unable to speak for themselves are sufficiently-protected. With that in mind, the Palaszczuk Government has not current plans to introduce legislation to allow for voluntary euthanasia and will closely-monitor developments in other jurisdictions.

Any Member of Parliament is permitted, under the Standing Rules and Orders of the Legislative Assembly, to introduce a Private Member’s Bill on any issue including euthanasia. Should such a Bill be introduced, Labor Party members of Parliament will be free to exercise a conscience vote when voting on the Bill.

 

4 - Outdoor advertising

In response to the petition launched by the Australian Christian Lobby, the Legislative Assembly referred an inquiry into sexually explicit outdoor advertising to the former Health and Community Services Committee (HCSC) on 17 April 2013. The inquiry focussed on whether reform is needed to protect children from exposure to inappropriate outdoor advertising.

The HCSC tabled its report on 31 January 2014. The inquiry found that the current sustem of self-regulation in the advertising industry worked well, because the majority of advertisers cooperate with the Advertising Standards Bureau (ASB) to remove or modify inappropriate advertisements. However, the inquiry highlighted a gap in the system where a small number of advertisers do not comply.

Seven of the eight recommendations made by the HCSC were addressed to industry. The one other recommendation encouraged the Queensland Government to introduce legislation to recognise the industry code of ethics and allow government to enforce the Advertising Standards Board decisions. The Newman-Nicholls Government’s response rejected this proposal.

The Palaszczuk Government was concerned about the inappropriate comments on many of the Wicked Campers vans that travelled on roads around the state. Those vans are painted with offensive slogans and cartoons which have been the subject of numerous complaints to the ASB. However, the company frequently refuses to abide by the ASB’s determinations.

The Premier gave a commitment to introduce laws that enable enforcement of those Board rulings, so legislation was introduced to ensure that advertisers who use these slogans are cartoons found inappropriate by the ASB are required to remove them from vehicles or risk having those vehicles de-registered. Once de-registered, the vehicle cannot be re-registered in Queensland until the advertisement is removed. The changes provide an enforcement mechanism for the already well-established processes adopted by the Advertising Standards Bureau, or the ASB.

 

5 - Prostitution

The Palaszczuk Government does not propose to change the current prostitution licensing framework in Queensland during the next term of Government

 

6 - Human Rights Bill

Following consideration of the Legal Affairs and Community Safety Committee’s Report No. 30, Inquiry into a possible Human Rights Act for Queensland delivered on 30 June 2016, the Queensland Government committed to developing a Human Rights Act for Queensland.

The Premier announced on 29 October 2016 that this legislation is to be modelled on the Victorian Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006 and will send a clear message that the Queensland Government values and protects the rights of all members in the community.

The Palaszczuk Government is working to deliver this commitment and will be engaging in consultation with stakeholders on the content.

 

7 - Child safety – Foster system

The Palaszczuk Government is working hard to improve outcomes for all children, including children in care.

We cannot do this without our wonderful foster carers. That is why the Palaszczuk Government has invested in a statewide recruitment campaign to encourage more families to open their hearts and homes, aiming to attract an additional 1,000 foster carers.

The government has also acted to improve support for foster carers by:

  • Covering additional out-of-pocket expenses related to child care costs for children aged between one and five
  • Authorising foster and kinship carers to manage immunisation and blood tests, where previously permission was required
  • Bringing forward the transition of foster carer support to non-government organisations.

 

In addition, $3 million has been invested in a trial to see professional foster carers trained to provide stable, supportive family environments to children and young people with very complex needs, who may otherwise live in residential care.

First and foremost, permanency outcomes for children should be with their family. Thanks to extra family support services put in place since 2015 there has been a 2.9% decrease in the number of children found to be in need of protection.

However, for a number of children in care reunification to their parents is not possible and permanent, stable and loving homes need to be provided. Since 2015 there has been a 7% increase in the number of children cared for by long-term carers who have been made their full legal guardian. In addition since 2015 the number of children cared for by kinship carers has increased to 44%.

The Palaszczuk Government has listened to children, young people and carers about the types of permanency outcomes they want and recently made changes to Queensland's Child Protection Laws. Those changes strengthen permanency planning and introduce a new Permanent Care Order that will provide the stability and permanency of an adoption order, but without severing a child's existing legal relationship to existing family members.

This new order is vitally important for children in out-of-home care. While adoption is and will always continue to be an option to meet the needs of children in Queensland, we must be realistic about its use.

There are many factors that can limit the suitability of adoption for children, particularly for children in care, such as the preference to place children with family and increase permanency with kin whenever possible.

When children are found stable and loving homes within their family, an adoption order would distort pre-existing legal family relationships. For example if a child was cared for by their maternal grandparent, an adoption order to the grandparent would make the child's mother their legal sister. Family adoption is not supported for these reasons in the wider community.

This impacts more than 40 percent of children in out-of-home care already placed with kinship carers.

There is also wider family connections to consider. An adoption order legally severs pre-existing family connections to siblings, grandparents, aunts and uncles in favour of the adoptive parent and their relatives. For many children in out-of-home care these family connections are still very important.

For Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children the legal separation caused by adoption has implications for their connection to country that extends to their legal participation in native title. 42 per cent of all children in out­of-home care are Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children.

These limitations are why many child protection experts like Professor Clare Tilbury have argued that 'adoption should be an option, but shouldn't necessarily be the preferred option'.

What is clear is we need more options than just adoption in Queensland. That is exactly why the Palaszczuk Government has introduced a new Permanent Care Order.

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LNP response received from Michael O'Dwyer, LNP State Director in communication to the Australian Christian Lobby State Director. 

 

1 – SEX AND GENDER THEORY EDUCATION

The LNP is committed to providing better support for families as we Build a Better Queensland.

We have already committed that we will withdraw Safe Schools Coalition resources from Queensland schools.

Under the LNP’s plan to tackle bullying we will develop a new anti-bullying resource for Queensland schools developed in consultation with teachers, parents, educational experts and child psychologists and that is age appropriate.

Any form of bullying or anti-social behaviour should never be tolerated in our schools.

 

2 – ABORTION

Earlier this year, the Queensland Parliament was due to debate two abortion bills that were introduced by the Member for Cairns Rob Pyne and were being strongly pushed by Labor’s Deputy Premier Jackie Trad.

The LNP made a public commitment to oppose both of these Bills after allowing Members a conscience vote.

The bills were then withdrawn from the Queensland Parliament and referred to the Queensland Law Reform Commission for further advice and analysis.

The first Bill left the entire area of abortion unregulated and this was clearly untenable.

The second Bill attempted to correct the failures of the first Bill but fell short. It created further risk and uncertainty as shown in the Parliamentary Committee report.

In fact, the second Bill sought to make it legal for a woman to secure her own abortion without medical supervision – including by the use if illicitly obtained drugs.

The second Bill also created additional legal uncertainty and an ongoing legislative conflict between the Criminal Code and the Health Act.

It is the long-held position of the LNP that the current abortion laws are sufficient and do not need to be changed.

 

3 – EUTHANASIA

In Queensland, neither voluntary euthanasia nor assisted suicide is permitted. This is consistent with most other Governments around the world.

While doctors and nurses have the obligation to preserve life, where death is imminent and where curative or life-prolonging treatment appears to be futile, the ethical duty is to ensure that death occurs with dignity and comfort. The law, therefore, recognises that doctors are entitled to administer proper and necessary medical treatment to alleviate pain and suffering even if those measures also shorten life.

The law also permits a person who has the capacity to make decisions about health matters to refuse any medical treatment. Advance health directives permit a person’s wishes to prevail with respect to particular treatment even when the person no longer has the capacity to exercise their rights to refuse treatment.

The LNP will not be changing the current laws.

 

4 – OUTDOOR ADVERTISING

The LNP is committed to ensuring Queensland is the safest place in Australia to raise a child.

We previously established a parliamentary committee inquiry to look at issues relating to sexually explicit outdoor advertising.

The LNP supported recommendations and agreed to investigate enforcement options to penalize advertisers that do not comply with the determinations of the Advertising Standards Board.

That remains our position and Labor have done nothing on the issue for three years.

Further, the so-called ban on Wicked Campervan slogans is completely futile and it has no impact on vehicles that are registered in other states.

 

5 – PROSTITUTION

The LNP is happy to consider international best practice policies and laws to ensure that illegal prostitution and sex trafficking activities are stamped out, in consultation with the police and the regulatory agency known as the Prostitution Licensing Authority.

 

6 – HUMAN RIGHTS BILL

We support the preservation of the human rights of Queenslanders, but we said publicly that we don’t support the introduction of a Human Rights Act or Bill of Rights. We believe that this would have the perverse effect of limiting the rights and freedoms of Queenslanders and while legislation should always be reviewed, existing laws are sufficient in their objective.

Issues relating to same-sex marriage are a matter for the Commonwealth Parliament.

Our anti-discrimination laws need to ensure that the fundamental rights of individuals are protected and any form of ‘hate speech’ is already outlawed in Queensland.

 

7 – CHILD SAFETY – FOSTER SYSTEM

There is no doubt that the child safety system is in crisis under Labor.

The Queensland Parliament passed new laws in this term to implement permanency care orders that provide stability for children in care. We will monitor the implementation of these laws to ensure they are operating in the best interests of the welfare of our vulnerable children.

 

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Pauline Hanson’s One Nation Party have not supplied responses to the questions so these responses have been referenced from their website here: http://www.onenation.com.au/

 

1 - Sex & Gender theory education

ONE NATION TO SCRAP THE CONTROVERSIAL SAFE SCHOOLS PROGRAM

The program covers “knowledge, skills and practical ideas to create safer and more inclusive school environments for same sex attracted, intersex and gender diverse students, staff and families”.

Due to the explicit content, many argue that the program is age inappropriate, especially for primary school students and covers topics that should be up to parents and guardians to discuss with their children.

To replace this program, One Nation will ensure that children are offered counselling and support where necessary on an individual basis.

https://www.facebook.com/Steve.Dickson.MP/videos/1415611935171631/

 

2 – ABORTION

Abortion should only be allowed for serious medical and psychological reasons, not lifestyle considerations.

One Nation recognises that for many and varied reasons abortion will unfortunately always be in demand. Legal abortion is a safer alternative to backyard procedures.

http://onenationwa.asn.au/Abortion.pdf

 

 

3 – EUTHANASIA

One Nation allow their members a conscience vote on euthanasia.

Pauline Hanson personal statement: “Euthanasia may not be everyone’s wish for one reason or another. If that be the case then you have no need to seek the necessary documentation. No one should seek another’s permission to die with dignity and peace. I have lived my life as I have seen fit, and I should have the right to die, as I see fit. No one has the right to dictate their beliefs, religious or otherwise on anyone else?  I and only I, will determine when my time is up and if I am not in a position to do so, then loved ones of my choosing will. It is a disgrace that family and friends have to watch loved ones go through pain and suffering unnecessarily. All I would want is peace”.

Pauline Hanson 

http://www.onenation.com.au/current_affairs/euthanasia

 

4 – OUTDOOR ADVERTISING

No comment

 

5 – PROSTITUTION

No comment

 

6 – HUMAN RIGHTS BILL

No comment

 

7 – CHILD SAFETY – FOSTER SYSTEM

No comment