22 October 2015

The Australian Christian Lobby today welcomed reports the Turnbull Government is considering enacting enabling legislation in this parliament for a people’s vote on marriage to be held in 2017.

“Today’s news provides further hope that this long-running debate will reach a settlement in a plebiscite after the 2016 election, as promised by Mr Turnbull on his first day as Prime Minister,” ACL Managing Director Lyle Shelton said.

“It will be important to get the detail right in any proposed legislation and we hope the government will consult broadly and in good faith on the specifics of the legislation."

Mr Shelton said that while the government had not yet consulted with groups in favour of preserving the definition of marriage, he hoped this would occur soon.

“I’m confident the Government is acting here in good faith and as such, will welcome the input of community groups who hold an interest in this debate.

“Consultation will be the key to establishing the integrity and legitimacy of the plebiscite process and I look forward to discussing these details with the government very soon.

"It would be good to see a bill from proponents of same-sex marriage so we can see the detail of what they are proposing but it would be better for the people to have their say at the plebiscite before the politicians voted.

“All sides of politics should agree to abide by the will of the Australian people expressed at the plebiscite.

“Marriage is a bedrock institution of our society.  Provided with a level playing field, we are confident the current legal definition will prevail if put to the Australian people.”