Media Release: Friday, October 30, 2009

The Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) today supported former Immigration Minister Kevin Andrews' calls for wider discussions about the integration of migrants into Australia, saying the nation needs to get beyond stifling debate under the guise of political correctness.

“It is vital that we have wide and uninhibited debate about matters of national importance and, as Kevin Andrews has said, discussing the integration of migrants can greatly assist social cohesion,” ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace said today.

“Discussions on this issue could end up identifying better ways of integrating ethnic groups into Australian society, something which would benefit everyone.

“If there are real difficulties with particular groups integrating we need to have a proper understanding of the situation so we can work out what to do.

“It is clearly the case that some ethnic groups integrate better than others. It is therefore sensible to have a proper debate.”

Mr Wallace said the harsh reaction to Kevin Andrews' comments appear to be another example of legitimate discussion being stifled in Australia.

“In the end we are talking about the ongoing development of Australian culture and society. This is too important to be relegated to the vacuum of political correctness,” Mr Wallace said.

Media Contact: Glynis Quinlan