Friday April 16, 2010

The Australian Christian Lobby has written to South Australian Premier Mike Rann over concerns his Government may be on the verge of breaking its first election commitment.

ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace has told Mr Rann he is concerned by media reports that new Attorney General John Rau may be about to drop the SA Government’s opposition to allowing violent interactive computer games in to Australia.

In response to a pre-election questionnaire sent to all Parties, SA State Secretary Michael Brown, responded on behalf of Labor saying: “The State Government has consistently opposed calls to introduce an R18+ classification for computer games due to the potential the harm that violent computer games can have on children.”

In his letter to Mr Brown, Mr Wallace says: “Any reasonable and fair-minded person is entitled to accept this response as meaning that the ALP, if re-elected, would continue its consistent opposition to the call to introduce an R18+ classification.”

However, Mr Rau has told the media “the response was given before the election and before he took over” and that he “has not yet made a decision on the issue”.

“The whole point of a pre-election questionnaire was to get a response before the election,” Mr Wallace said.

“If Labor was planning to change its policy, its response to our questionnaire was its opportunity.

“Instead it gave a response that could only lead fair-minded people to conclude that Labor was concerned by the impact of these games on children and that its opposition to lifting the ban would be maintained after the election.

“Any change would fuel the fire of public cynicism about politicians and their promises and this is not in the interests of a new Government or the people who elected it.

“We certainly hope this is some sort of mistake by Mr Rau and that the Government will urgently confirm its pre-election commitment,” Mr Wallace said.

The full question and full answer were posted on and publicised widely to the Christian constituency before the election.

Media Contact – Lyle Shelton 0448 602 878