Happy New Year and welcome to another year at ACL.
I trust you and your family have enjoyed rest and relaxation over the Christmas period.
The ACL Team and I have benefitted from time out after a tumultuous 12 months.
This month, Australian social researchers, McCrindle, published a national study on religion, spirituality and worldview trends entitled ‘Faith and Belief in Australia’.
The Australian Government should condemn the jailing of former Christian governor of Jakarta, Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, also known as Ahok, for alleged blasphemy against Islam, according to the Australian Christian Lobby.
Legislation restricting religious schools and organisations in the employment of people who share common values was today introduced in the Victorian parliament by the Andrews Government.
In our constitutional tradition, freedom means that all persons have the right to believe or strive to believe in a divine creator and a divine law. For those who choose this course, free exercise is essential in preserving their own dignity and in striving for a self-definition shaped by their religious precepts. Free exercise in this sense implicates more than just freedom of belief. It means, too, the right to express those beliefs and to establish one’s religious (or nonreligious) self-definition in the political, civic, and economic life of our larger community.
employed the familiar legal fiction of including corporations within RFRA’s definition of ‘persons’, but the purpose of extending rights to corporations is to protect the rights of people associated with the corporations... Protecting the free-exercise rights of closely held corporations thus protects the religious liberty of the humans who own and control them.
It is not for the Court to say that the religious beliefs of the plaintiffs are mistaken or unreasonable.
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