For release: 22 March 2011

The Australian Christian Lobby’s Managing Director Jim Wallace has today rejected comments by union leader Paul Howes that allowing same sex couples to marry was an issue of discrimination.

“Practical discrimination against same sex couples has been removed by the amendment to 84 pieces of Commonwealth legislation in 2008,” said Mr Wallace.

“For all intents and purposes, same sex couples are treated in exactly the same way as any other couple under Australian law.

“The claim of discrimination is merely a ploy to engender sympathy for an activist agenda over an important social and cultural institution that transcends religions and cultures.

"It is irresponsible for Party officials to perpetuate this myth when it was the ALP that removed the discrimination at the Federal level.

“If examples of substantive discrimination exist, it is beholden on those claiming it to identify them so the community can asses whether it justifies the destruction of an institution held important to so many to redress them, or whether there are other less selfish ways to do it" Mr Wallace said.

Media Contact: Katherine Spackman on 0408 875 979.