Tuesday October 25, 2011

The Australian Christian Lobby’s Queensland Director Wendy Francis said tonight’s debate on same-sex civil unions is a waste of Queensland Parliamentary time seemingly designed to appease a small Green constituency in Deputy Premier Andrew Fraser’s seat of Mt Coot-tha.

Ms Francis said marriage was a Commonwealth matter and there was a well-publicised debate going on in federal politics about the future of marriage.

“The Queensland Government should be concentrating on its issues, not providing a platform in the Queensland Parliament to give radical Green social policy an airing,” she said.

She urged the LNP to vote against Mr Fraser’s bill.

“Protecting marriage should be a matter of party policy because of its importance to children. Many voters will watch tonight’s proceedings with interest as they consider which candidate to vote for at the up-coming election,” she said.

“Both parties risk driving voters to family friendly candidates by not being clear in their support for marriage.”

Ms Francis said ACL would circulate how MPs vote tonight on its website to tens of thousands of voters in the lead-up to the election.

“Queenslanders only learnt about this Private Members Bill three days ago and this morning have been told about the debate being introduced tonight,” she said.

“This is an important issue for the future of how we view the relationship between parents and children and I would have thought our parliamentarians were elected to represent the views of their communities and to consult with them. Instead, this bill has lacked any consultation with the community.”

Ms Francis said that marriage should remain between a man and a woman and civil unions was an attempt to mimic marriage.

“Marriage and family is a foundational aspect of our society and any attempt to change the meaning of marriage would change the nature of family. Each child has the right to at least begin life with their biological mum and a dad. Same-sex marriage severs this right for some children,” she said.

“As a community we haven’t explored the full implications of changing the definition of marriage and the impact it would have on future generations. We need to have this discussion and today’s attempt to introduce same-sex civil unions rushes this process,” she said.

Ms Francis said discrimination against same-sex couples had been removed in the Commonwealth Law in 2008 with amendments to 85 laws.

“Mr Fraser’s bill is not about rectifying a practical grievance, it is more about appeasing the Greens’ political agenda rather than Labor values,” she said.