In light of the by-election occurring in Toowoomba South this Saturday 16th July, the Australian Christian Lobby asked the following 5 questions of the candidates. These questions reflect the issues that are of concern to voters particularly as they relate to social justice such as abortion, poker machines and the treatment of women. The ACL seeks to inform voters so that they can vote carefully on Saturday. 

Click on the issues below to read the candidates' answers.

The Queensland Government is currently considering a private members bill “Abortion Law Reform (Women's Right to Choose) Amendment Bill 2016 and Inquiry into laws governing termination of pregnancy in Queensland” which would allow abortion for any reason up to full term. How would you vote on this bill, or any similar bill seeking to remove all protection for unborn children?

Affilliation Candidate Answer
 LNP  David Janetzki I would vote against this bill or any similar bill.
 FF  Alexandra Todd I would vote against any legislation that removed protection from unborn children and their mothers. In light of the information available regarding babies being born alive and left to die, if elected, I would seek to introduce legislation for their protection, and the protection of medical & nursing staff.
 KAP  Ken Elliott I would vote to keep the laws as they currently are.
 IND  Rob Berry  Declined to answer
 GRN  Ken Gover  Declined to answer
 IND  Di Thorley  Declined to answer

Religious Education classes offer students an opportunity to explore issues of faith during their education. Will you support the continuation of RE classes in our state schools as provided for in the Education Act? 

Affilliation Candidate Answer
 LNP  David Janetzki Yes I will support the continuation of RE classes in our state schools.
 FF  Alexandra Todd Yes.
 KAP  Ken Elliott I would like to see religious studies taught as a dedicated subject in schooling.
 IND  Rob Berry  Declined to answer
 GRN  Ken Gover  Declined to answer
 IND  Di Thorley  Declined to answer

Chaplaincy provides invaluable support for students and is overwhelmingly supported by school principals, parents and school communities. Are you personally committed to maintaining the availability of chaplaincy in schools?

Affilliation Candidate Answer
 LNP  David Janetzki I am personally committed to chaplaincy in schools (my wife has served as a school chaplain). 
 FF  Alexandra Todd Yes
 KAP  Ken Elliott Whilst in general I do believe that the school Chaplaincy does offer support for students, I believe that it should be support by a majority the school community before implementation.  I am committed to the school chaplaincy program, I would still like to ensure that the school students have access to professional school counsellors.
 IND  Rob Berry  Declined to answer
 GRN  Ken Gover  Declined to answer
 IND  Di Thorley  Declined to answer

What is your personal opinion on the prevalence of poker machines in our community which is causing great hardship for a large number of families? Would you support measures to reduce government dependency on revenue from poker machines?

Affilliation Candidate Answer
 LNP  David Janetzki I don't use poker machines myself but accept that the majority who do, do so in a responsible manner for the purpose of entertainment. I believe governments should strive to achieve a balanced approach to the regulation of poker machines that respects people's personal choice and guarantees revenues received into the Gambling Community Benefit Fund are put to good use in our regions and help all Queenslanders. 
 FF  Alexandra Todd It is devastating that so many in the community are affected by gambling & addiction in many forms, and it is most concerning that the government is addicted to the revenue, I would do my best to reduce the dependency of the government on the funds, and reduce the number of poker machines in the community. I believe it would be appropriate for venues to refuse entry to problem gamblers, in the same way they refuse to serve alcohol to someone who is clearly inebriated.
 KAP  Ken Elliott a) Poker machines are more harmful than any perceived economic community benefit, b) I would support measures to reduce government dependency, this would be conditional on the content of the measures independently.
 IND  Rob Berry  Declined to answer
 GRN  Ken Gover  Declined to answer
 IND  Di Thorley  Declined to answer

Do you believe that adult entertainment venues that objectify women, such as strip clubs and brothels, have a place in Toowoomba?

Affilliation Candidate Answer
 LNP  David Janetzki  My very strong preference is that such venues remain out of Toowoomba 
 FF  Alexandra Todd  Never. It is clear that since the Beattie Government legalised brothels in Qld that things have not improved, I am committed to providing support to women who believe work in this industry is their only option. It also concerns me that women who may not speak English or have local support are trapped in this industry.
 KAP  Ken Elliott  No, I do not believe that these types of industries have anything to offer the community.
 IND  Rob Berry  Declined to answer
 GRN  Ken Gover  Declined to answer
 IND  Di Thorley  Declined to answer