Thursday, April 5th, 2012

The Australian Christian Lobby, in its submission to the senate inquiry on same-sex marriage, has highlighted the serious implications this proposal has for honouring the importance of motherhood and fatherhood.

Managing Director Jim Wallace said the submission by the lobby group, which has 15,000 supporters, argues that marriage between a man and a woman is a public good and that children do best with married, biological parents.

“Married, biological parents provide the ideal environment in which to raise children and government should promote and encourage this ideal,” Mr Wallace said.

The 43-page submission also detailed consequences of redefining marriage including the loss of religious freedom and how relationships are treated in education at primary and secondary schools in particular.

The submission also calls on the inquiry to acknowledge the potentially serious implications for freedom of religion and conscience and particularly after a recent European Court of Human Rights judgement that has been interpreted by experts in the law as creating vulnerabilities for churches and individual people where same- sex marriage is legislated.

“Despite assurances from same-sex marriage advocates that religious conscience will be protected, we have no confidence in the ability to guarantee this – especially when many Australian organisations such as the Human Rights Law Centre already call for anti-discrimination exemptions that religious groups receive to be rescinded,” he said.

“When it comes to education, many organisations are run by religious groups and their ability to teach about the traditional understanding of the family unit is threatened by the redefinition of marriage.

“For example, in Massachusetts, parents are unable to remove their children from sex education classes that teach views on sexuality that differ from their own.

Mr Wallace said the submission also addressed common arguments used by same-sex marriage advocates and highlighted that in law same-sex couples face no legal detriments.

ACL’s submission can be found here: