31 March 2016
The Australian Christian Lobby calls on the QLD Attorney General, Yvette D’Ath, to clarify what the re-introduced civil unions law, designed to allow the LGBTIQPA+ community to enter into a partnership, will mean for religious freedom.
ACL QLD director Wendy Francis said advice from the Brisbane-based LGBTI Legal Services quoted on a homosexual website indicated that the new law meant religious organisations with reception halls available for hire will be on “shaky ground” if they declined a request from a same-sex couple who want to commemorate their civil union in their facility.
“If religious freedoms, as a result of the law that came into affect this past week, are under threat as suggested, it is disturbing,” Ms Francis said.
“The Labor Government needs to reassure Queenslanders that this law does not run contrary to our freedom to hold varying views on religious or secular grounds,” Ms Francis said.
LGBTI Legal Services said a business is required to serve all customers per the Anti-Discrimination Act. “The same applies to a bakery refusing to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple,” the legal advice says.
“This message from the LGBTI Legal Services reads like an invitation for same-sex couples to deliberately target religious institutions in order to haul them before the anti-discrimination commissioner,” Ms Francis said.
Ms Francis warns that this was another example of where any opposing views could be stifled by intimidating legal threats from rainbow activists.
She said international experience indicated it would get worse if same-sex marriage was introduced into Australia.
“We have a growing number of cases internationally were people are being brought before the courts, fined and imprisoned for holding to their religious beliefs,” Ms Francis said.
“The Ashers Bakery ‘gay cake’ saga in Northern Ireland where a Christian baker was brought before the court for refusing to place a pro-homosexual message on a cake is a case in point.
“We have been told for years that same-sex marriage does not affect other peoples’ freedoms.
“This is of course false and we have Australian and international examples of same-sex marriage ideology clashing with freedom of speech, conscience and religion.
“The overseas experience becomes more serious by the day. If anyone thought same-sex marriage would not take away other peoples’ rights, they are wrong.
“LGBTIQPA+ ideology has far-reaching consequences on businesses, religious organisations, communities and families.”
“We should not rush into this simply because some other countries have sought to redefine marriage.
“There will always be millions of Australians who will always believe marriage is between a man and a woman, no matter what some politicians might say.”
“With the reintroduction of civil union laws we ask the Labor Government to clearly state their on-going commitment to religious freedom in QLD.”
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