ACL compiles a daily media monitoring service of stories of interest to the Christian constituency relating to children, family, drugs and alcohol, marriage, human rights, religious freedom etc. Visit the ACL’s website each day to see what’s of interest in the news. Please note that selection of the articles does not represent ACL endorsement of the content.


Children & Family

Family law expert Patrick Parkinson calls for legislation change

Pia Akerman - The Australian

The original architect of John Howard's family law reforms has called for further legislative change to ease the demand for parental responsibility in cases where the parents "have never been a family''. International Society of Family Law president Patrick Parkinson today said the Family Law Act needed amending so it didn't force the courts to try and keep alive relationships "which aren't sufficiently healthy to survive without intensive care''.

Drugs & Alcohol

How hospitals are cleaning up a bloody, violent mess

Chris Paine - Daily Telegraph

Kings Cross is a bloody, awful mess; a cocktail of violence and alcohol that shows Australia's drinking culture at its worst. That's the assessment of Dr Gordian Fulde, Head of Emergency at St Vincent's Hospital in neighbouring Darlinghurst. Dr Fulde's department is the first responder to incidents of alcohol-fuelled violence in Sydney's notorious inner-city Cross, a mecca for out-of-control partying and debauchery. He's seen it all, and he's had enough.

Bust heroin syndicate serviced 100 in Sydney: police

Dominic Bossi - SMH

Four people have been arrested as police shut down an alleged heroin distribution syndicate that regularly serviced more than 100 people in Sydney's western suburbs. Police from the Middle Eastern Organised Crime Squad and Holroyd Local Area Command raided a property in Richmond Street, South Wentworthville, at 11.20am yesterday.


Policies fail to make dent in Aboriginal joblessness

Tim Colebatch - The Age

Aboriginal employment rates have slumped in the past five years, despite unprecedented efforts by the public and private sectors to increase indigenous workforce participation. The Bureau of Statistics estimates that just 46.4 per cent of adult Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders had a job last year. That was a slight rise from 45.6 per cent in 2010 but well below the peak of 50.4 per cent in 2006.


NZ gay marriage bill set to be debated with MPs getting a conscience vote


A bill to legalise gay marriage in New Zealand has been pulled from the members' ballot box, officially putting the issue on parliament's agenda. The bill, backed by Labour MP Louisa Wall, was pulled from the ballot on Thursday, along with four other private members' bills. It is not yet clear when the bill will have its first reading.


ALP seeks to stop immigrants turning right on arrival

Tanveer Ahmed - Sydney Morning Herald

The public savaging of the Greens by sections of the ALP is not just about reclaiming the white, working-class Labor base - it is as much about appealing to non-white immigrants. Two key issues on which Labor is at risk of losing the ethnic vote are gay marriage and asylum seekers. The issue of gay marriage ignites one of the greatest fears first-generation Asians or Arabs have when they raise children in Australia - of rampant, unregulated sexuality tearing at the foundations of social stability and, particularly, the integrity of the family unit.

Fading party 'nearing limit of its support'

Christian Kerr - The Australian

Greens support in Newspoll has fallen since the party failed to give ground last month on asylum-seekers as poll observers warn they may be reaching the limits of their support. The Greens' vote stayed static on 11 per cent in this week's Newspoll.

Aussie Iron Lady will die fighting

Simon Benson - The Daily Telegraph

A final bloody campaign to get rid of Julia Gillard has begun - dubbed the Thatcher plan. Having failed to unseat their leader through a failed challenge and convinced she is now more resolved than ever to hang on, an operation within Labor to publicly undermine her has been enacted. Several recent events confirm a significant and deliberate change of tactic within rival Kevin Rudd's camp. It is even more perilous for Gillard because it implies a not insignificant number of MPs have committed to a course of action from which they will accept only one outcome.

Jenkins retires from federal politics

Jessica Wright and Judith Ireland - SMH

The former speaker of the House of the Representatives, Harry Jenkins, has announced his retirement from Parliament. In a statement to his colleagues and the media today, Mr Jenkins said: ''I have today informed ALP members in Scullin, the Prime Minister and my caucus colleagues that I will not be seeking the party's endorsement for the Federal seat of Scullin.

Gash to quit Liberal Party if elected

Alex Arnold - Illawarra Mercury

Gilmore MP Joanna Gash will resign from the Liberal Party at the end of her term as federal member if she is elected to Shoalhaven City Council. Mrs Gash, 68, said in January she would not recontest the seat she's held since 1996, setting her sights instead on becoming the next Shoalhaven mayor.

Liberal councillors give head office a headache as allegations swirl

Kate McClymont - SMH

A raft of allegations about Liberal councillors behaving badly is giving the NSW party boss, Arthur Sinodinos, a headache. Tonight the party's executive is likely to take the step of ensuring not a single Liberal candidate be endorsed to run for Fairfield council in the forthcoming local government elections.

Religious Freedom & Persecution

Muslim Persecution of Christians: June, 2012

Raymond Ibrahim - Gatestone Institute

U.S.-backed rebels are committing Christian genocide in Syria, where they are sacking churches and issuing threats that all Christians will be cleansed from rebel-held territory. A mass exodus of thousands of Christians is taking place, even as mainstream Western reporters, such as Robert Fisk, demonize these same Christians for being supportive of the secular regime.

‘No compulsion in religion’: ‘One should be able to choose their religion’

Rana Tanveer - Tribune

A Christian couple from Ichhra, Pakistan have been on the run for six years after facing threats from Muslim neighbours who would not let them rever to Christianity after embracing Islam. Imran James and Nazia Masih had ‘embraced’ Islam on April 27, 2006, taking on the Muslim names Sameer Ali and Ayesha Bibi respectively but later reverted to Christianity. James explained to The Tribune in June that in converting they had only wanted to get married. He said, “[We] embraced Islam only to protect ourselves from any legal action [that my wife’s family might have taken]. I was never serious about practicing.”

Sexualisation of Society

Brisbane strippers at centre of 'Disneyland for men' topless bar debate say job is not degrading

Reshni Ratnam - Courier Mail

Strippers from a topless bar dubbed 'Disneyland for men' have hit back at suggestions they are being exploited after calls last week for more regulation around the sex industry in Brisbane. AT 4.25pm on a Friday afternoon the popular Grosvenor on George St is packed. Female patrons are hard to find but there are men everywhere.


Godspeed our pollies to the burbs

Bernard Salt - The Australian

There is a schism widening within urban Australia, and especially in Sydney and Melbourne. A divide between the inner-city and the middle and outer suburbs. The most godless places in Australia are generally found in the inner city; outer suburbs such as Melbourne's Greenvale and Sydney's Horsley Park are extraordinarily devout Christian. Perhaps the proponents of gay marriage might like to take their case to the outer suburbs - to the sausage sizzles, to the footy matches, to the enclosed shopping centres and, right there, amid the unfashionable fray, convince the god-fearing locals of the merits of their case.

Years after Apollo 16 moon walk, astronaut finds Jesus

Trevor Freeze - Charismanews

If you were alive when man first walked on the moon 43 years ago, chances are this moment is forever etched in your memory. An event arguably as big as any in the history of the United States, Neil Armstrong’s first steps came on television at 10:56 p.m. on July 20, 1969. Charlie Duke remembers. How could he not? The Capcom astronaut for that Apollo 11 mission entrusted with communicating with Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin during their landing on the lunar surface, Duke could hardly breathe in those final minutes. The mission was in real danger of aborting and Duke was the sole communication link from mission control to the astronauts hovering over the moon.

Personal story highlights battle with self-harm

7.30 - ABC

There aren't many subjects that remain taboo, but the phenomenon of self-harm seems to be one of them. We rarely hear about it publicly, even though it's a disturbing problem that's growing among young Australians. Tonight we tell the story of one young woman who's battling the affliction and a pioneering school principal who's trying to teach young people the value of loving themselves.

File sharing on the internet has inspired a new religion in Sweden - and the government has made it official


People everywhere are file sharing these days, using computers to download music or other materials, often ignoring copyrights. In Sweden, however, it is a religion. Kopimism - the name comes from a Swedish spelling of the words ''copy me'' - claims more than 8000 faithful who have signed up on the church's website. It has applied for the right to perform marriages and to receive subsidies awarded to religious organisations by the state, and it has tried, thus far unsuccessfully, to buy a church building, even though most church activities are conducted online.

Skype joins hands with authorities to assist in online surveillance

Craig Timberg - SMH

Skype, the online phone service long favoured by political dissidents, criminals and others eager to communicate beyond the reach of governments, has expanded its co-operation with law enforcement authori ies to make online chats and other user information available to police. Surveillance of the audio and video feeds remains impractical, even when courts issue warrants, say industry officials. But that barrier could eventually vanish as Skype becomes one of the world's most popular forms of telecommunication.