For release: 1 July 2015

Today the Australian Christian Lobby urged the Coalition to hold to its principled policy position on marriage.

“The Coalition would need to abandon key family policy, leaving the party with no position on marriage, in order to grant a conscience vote on same sex marriage,” said ACL Managing Director Lyle Shelton.

“It’s not a politician’s role to abolish the fundamental reality of husband and wife, mother and father. They may not mean much to the proponents of this bill, but to a child they mean everything.

“Same-sex marriage redefines family and requires children to miss out on one of their parents.

“The redefinition of family has serious consequences for children, especially through the necessary flow-on practice of surrogacy and other forms of assisted reproductive technology.

Mr Shelton said that there was a huge number of Australians who would never accept the new definition of family and expressed concern that they would be legally prosecuted and silenced for their beliefs, as is happening in other countries.

“The same-sex marriage lobby are fundamentally intolerant of the belief in family. This is the lobby who want to make it illegal for faith based schools to teach kids about marriage. This is not the mark of a free society.

“We have no confidence that the exemptions for ministers of religion would hold over time in light of the gay lobby’s track record of attacking and opposing protections for freedom of conscience wherever they apply.

“Australian political parties should uphold the rights of children to be allowed to know their mother and father and honour the timeless definition of marriage.”