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.



New fund launched to defend women, children from forced abortions in China

Kathleen Gilbert - LifeSiteNews

A leading advocate against forced abortions in China is harnessing renewed international interest in the human rights atrocity with a fund aimed at helping victims and putting an end to the Communist country’s coercive population control once and for all. “The clock has started ticking on China’s forced abortion policy,” Pastor Bob Fu of ChinaAid said in an announcement June 19 at the launch of the Chinese Children Defense Fund.

Drugs & Alcohol

Dole control: Ban on booze, smokes, pokies

Catherine Hockley - The Advertiser

The Government scheme aims to ensure kids are properly looked after. Struggling welfare-dependent households in Adelaide's north will be banned from spending their benefits on alcohol, cigarettes and gambling. As many as 1000 households will be signed up to the income management pilot program, which aims to ensure children are cared for - and benefits are not diverted to non-essentials, including pornography and home brew kits.


UK: Unconventional school which lets children call teachers by first name forced to consider uniform code as parents reject relaxed rules

Elenor Harding - Daily Mail

Its free and easy ethos was once seen as the way forward in secondary education. But nearly 40 years after Stantonbury Campus opened, parents now seem to be less than enthused about its ‘liberal’ approach to teaching. The comprehensive school, which has no uniform and lets pupils call teachers by their first names, is facing a boycott from families who would prefer to send their children to traditional schools. And in an effort to win them back, governors have decided to scrap the relaxed clothing policy and introduce a uniform from September. The decision comes amid nationwide concern about the lack of discipline in today’s schools.

US: ACLU threatens Utah school for requiring parental consent to check out homosexual book

Kathleen Gilbert -

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has threatened a Utah school district for ensuring parents consent to their children reading a homosexual advocacy book, prompting pro-family lawyers to respond in their defense. The book was first noticed in January when a mother complained that her kindergarten-age son child brought home “In Our Mothers’ House” from Windridge Elementary School, sparking a petition signed by 25 parents in protest. The book, which tells a story about children who are being raised by a lesbian couple, was placed behind the library counter after an April parent-teacher committee decided the book didn’t comport with state law barring homosexual advocacy in the school curriculum.


Coalition would scrap tax within 12 months

Julian Drape - AAP

Labor's carbon tax is about to start but if the federal opposition has its way the pollution price will be relatively short-lived. The coalition has vowed to axe the tax as the "first order of government" if it wins the next election due by late 2013. Opposition climate action spokesman Greg Hunt says a Tony Abbott-led government would be able to repeal the carbon tax within six months if Labor co-operated.

Religious leaders attack Cardinal Pell over climate change

Catholic News

Religious leaders have taken a swipe at Sydney's Catholic archbishop Cardinal George Pell for his views about the science of climate change, according to an AAP report in the Sydney Morning Herald. Sydney rabbi Jeffrey Kamins and retiring Canberra bishop Pat Power were in Canberra yesterday to argue Australia needed to tackle dangerous climate change for future generations. Rabbi Kamins said too many people incorrectly believed religion had an antipathy towards science. "We believe for the most part as religious leaders that it's all about the growth of consciousness and awareness," he told AAP outside parliament house, adding global warming couldn't be ignored.


Mercy clinic bid for Tassie

Helen Kempton - The Mercury

Tasmania could have Australia's first mobile medically assisted suicide clinic if the state's euthanasia laws are changed, as Exit International director Philip Nitschke expects. Exit International will bring a prototype of the mobile clinic to Hobart in September to coincide with debate at the Pushing the Boundaries Anaesthetists conference. Australian Christian Lobby state director Mark Brown said he had serious concerns about having "death delivered to your door".

Euthanasing the disabled

Moira Byrne Garton - Eureka Street

Last week, the Supreme Court of the Canadian province British Columbia released its decision in the Carter v Attorney Geeral Canada case. The decision lifted the ban on physician-assisted suicide, and followed a courtroom battle late last year. While some lobby groups welcomed the decision, other groups lamented the development and encouraged residents of British Columbia to write to their politicians in protest.


Gambling addict steals almost $60,000 from boss who helped her buy mobile home

Tony Keim - The Courier-Mail

A gambling addict whose caring boss helped her buy a mobile home repaid him by stealing almost $60,000 of his company's money. The Brisbane District Court was told William Schnitzerling, 65, put up $24,000 of his own money to help Sylvia Gasenzer purchase a mobile home worth $41,000. Mr Schnitzerling, the court was told, so valued Gasenzer's 20 years of loyal and dedicated service that he then allowed her, her female partner and their young child to move their mobile home onto his land and live there rent-free.


Macklin defends NT intervention

Lisa Martin - AAP

Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin insists laws to extend the federal government's intervention in the Northern Territory do not breach Australia's human rights obligations. Labor's Stronger Futures draft laws are before the Senate and expected to pass on Thursday. The laws, extending for a decade the NT intervention into Aboriginal communities begun under the Howard government, have been challenged by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Amnesty International and indigenous leaders who wanted a human rights test.


Greens face first big test in post-Brown era

Richard Willingham - The Age

The Greens are facing their first big test in the post-Bob Brown era with a fundamental change in the tone of debate on asylum seeker boats challenging the consciences of left-liberal Greens voters. The Greens and Coalition yesterday voted down a bill 39-29 in the Senate to allow offshore processing, with shadow attorney-general George Brandis saying it was ''a great day for human rights''. Labor senator Helen Polley replied: ''You are a joke.''

Prostitution & Sex Trafficking

Dutch court bans child sex lobby group


A Dutch court on Wednesday outlawed an association which lobbies for the social acceptance of sexual relations between adults and children. "The court has banned and ordered the dissolution" of the Martijn organisation, a spokeswoman for the civil court in the northern city of Assen, Luta van der Leij, told AFP. The court said in a statement Martijn glorified sex with children as "something normal and acceptable, or as something that should be."

Religious Freedom & Persecution

Muslim Persecution of Christians: May 2012

Raymond Ibrahim - Gatestone Institute

Elsewhere in Sub-Sahara Africa, wherever Christianity and Islam meet, Christians are being killed, slaughtered, beheaded and even crucified. Unlike those nations, such as Saudi Arabia, that have eliminated Christianity altogether, Muslim countries with significant Christian minorities saw much persecution during the month of May: in Egypt, Christians were openly discriminated against in law courts, even as some accused the nation's new president of declaring that he will "achieve the Islamic conquest of Egypt for the second time, and make all Christians convert to Islam;" in Indonesia, Muslims threw bags of urine on Christians during worship; in Kashmir and Zanzibar, churches were set on fire; and in Mali, Christianity "faces being eradicated."

Vietnamese officials destroy two new church buildings

Dan Wooding - ASSIST Ministries

Compass Direct News (CDN) is reporting that Vietnamese officials in Muong Cha district, Dien Bien Province, destroyed two new church buildings of ethnic minority Hmong Christians this month and threatened to tear down a third. CDN said that the Ho He Church, erected in April by the unregistered Vietnam Good News Mission, was demolished on June 17. It also reported that the Phan Ho Church of the registered Evangelical Church of Vietnam (North) was destroyed on June 13, 2012. “The church building threatened with demolition, The Cong Church, also belongs to the Vietnam Good News Mission,” said the CDN story.


Time for solution above politics

Ben Williams - International News

The Australian Christian Lobby has implored all parties to pass the Oakeshott Bill which presents a reasonable compromise in the bid to stop the accelerating number of refugee deaths at sea. “Over 300 deaths at sea since 2010 is simply too many for us to see the Parliament rise for the winter break without at least a temporary solution,” said ACL’s Managing Director Jim Wallace.

Julia Gillard outsources boats solution to committee

Matthew Franklin - The Australian

Federal MPs are bracing for an angry public backlash after leaving Canberra last night with the only progress towards ending the political impasse over asylum-seeker policy being Julia Gillard's creation of a committee of non-politicians to bring "fresh eyes" to the problem. As Tony Abbott and the Prime Minister blamed each other for the failure of the Senate to back a bill allowing asylum-seeker processing in Malaysia and Nauru, the Greens were also under intense attack for failing to bend in their opposition to offshore processing, which was struck down last year by the High Court.

Political impasse casts refugees adrift

Simon Benson - The Daily Telegraph

More asylum seekers could drown at sea over the next six weeks with MPs decamping from parliament last night for their winter break after failing to resolve the refugee crisis. At least 20 federal politicians plan to jet overseas with the asylum seeker issue unresolved. Six MPs, including opposition immigration spokesman Scott Morrison, have approval to fly to the US over the break.


Home births risky, NSW coroner finds

Stephen Johnson - AAP

A coroner has found a Sydney home birth contributed "unnecessarily" to the death of a baby girl and says expectant parents need to be aware of the dangers of bringing a child into the world without medical help. Roisin Fraser died moments after she was born in the early hours of March 27, 2009, at her parents' home at Croydon, in Sydney's inner west. The "free birth" meant obstetric and nursing practitioners were not present.

Police mourn the lost life of baby Bridget

The Daily Telegraph

Inside a tiny white coffin is somebody's precious daughter, a beautiful little girl that no one got to know. So much remains unknown about the "beautiful stranger", including what her name was or how she came into the world. Just the five police officers who came to know her in death were there yesterday to farewell the baby girl they called Bridget, found in a shoebox almost two years ago. A gardener raking leaves outside a Strathfield unit block in August 2010 found the cardboard box, partially buried beneath some mulch.