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.
Call to oppose cloning babies with three parent's genes
A Catholic academic institute is calling upon Christians and non-Christians alike to oppose proposals to legalise genetically modified babies. The Government is currently consulting the public on whether to give the go ahead to so-called 'three-parent babies'. The procedure would use the DNA of a third party to genetically modify a human egg or embryo to minimise the chance of a child having an incurable medical condition.
Children & Family
No longer taboo, but divorce still damages children: Suffering goes on into adulthood and even old age
Steve Doughty - Daily Mail
Family breakdown is as devastating for today’s children as it was when divorce was a source of social disgrace, a state-backed report warned yesterday. Even though divorce is no longer considered ‘shameful’ – as it was until the 1970s – the children of broken families continue to suffer destructive effects throughout their lives, the report said. The paper, produced by a team of senior academics, found that the damage caused to a child by divorce continues to blight his or her life as far as old age.
Court releases reasons for international custody case ruling
Elizabeth Byrne - ABC
The High Court has today released the reasons for its decision about four Italian girls at the centre of a custody dispute in Australia. The High Court found the four girls suffered no practical unfairness when they were not allowed independent legal representation in the Family Court. The mother had brought the girls to Australia for a holiday in 2010 on Queensland's Sunshine Coast and never returned to Italy, breaking a shared custody agreement.
Now Brussels takes aim at the Famous Five! Books portraying 'traditional' families could be barred
James Chapman - Daily Mail
Books which portray ‘traditional’ images of mothers caring for their children or fathers going out to work could be barred from schools under proposals from Brussels. An EU report claims that ‘gender stereotyping’ in schools influences the perception of the way boys and girls should behave and damages women’s career opportunities in the future. Critics said the proposals for ‘study materials’ to be amended so that men and women are no longer depicted in their traditional roles would mean the withdrawal of children’s classics, such as Enid Blyton’s The Famous Five series, Paddington Bear or Peter Pan.
Parents must act to get school kids bonus
Sue Dunlevy - News Limited Network
Four hundred thousand families must notify Centrelink in the next month if their child is starting primary school or moving to high school next year so they don't miss out on the school kids bonus worth up to $820 per child. Under changes that came into effect this year, the bonus is now paid in two instalments in January and July to the parents of 1.3 million school-age children who qualify for Family Tax Benefit A. The bonus is worth $410 a year for a primary school child and $820 for a high school student.
Donor Conception & Surrogacy
World's most prolific surrogate mum quitting after giving away 13 babies
Kathryn knight - Daily Mail
Carole Horlock felt her growing baby move inside her for the first time early this month - an unmistakeable fluttering which is a joyful milestone in any healthy pregnancy. It’s a sensation with which Carole is not unfamiliar, having been pregnant many times before. She loves the whole experience, she says. Yet when she gives birth, she will hand over the baby to another couple, without so much as a cuddle. At 46, Carole is the world’s most prolific surrogate mother - a title which has earned her enormous admiration.
Drugs & Alcohol
Marijuana legalised in Washington and Colorado
Andrew Duffy - Ninemsn
Washington and Colorado voters have made history by becoming the first US states to legalise recreational marijuana use. The decision will set up a legal showdown between the states and the federal government, which currently backs prohibition, according the Associated Press. Washington supporters of the policy, named Initiative 502, say the move will raise $2 billion in taxes over five years and reduce small-time arrests. Officials say the money will be spent on education, health care, substance abuse prevention and other government services. In Washington citizens over 21 will be able to buy 28 grams of dried marijuana, half a kilogram of marijuana-infused product, such as brownies, or two kilograms of marijuana-infused liquid.
States bent on destroying TAFES union
A union has called on the federal government to withdraw funding from three states it says are intent on destroying the TAFE system. Victoria recently cut funding to TAFE colleges, NSW has flagged an overhaul and on Wednesday, a report said about half of Queensland's TAFE colleges should be closed. The Australian Education Union's TAFE secretary Pat Forward says federal tertiary education and skills minister Chris Evans must remind states what they stand to lose.
Tasmania’s broken ‘forests peace talks’ expose the ugly face of eco-extortion
Mark Poynter - On Line Opinion
Last week, Tasmania’s so-called ‘forest peace talks’ broke down after two-years of negotiation between timber industry and environmental lobby representatives. Soon after this was announced, the Wilderness Society’s Lyndon Schneiders was arrogantly asserting on ABC News that: “The big sawmillers have refused to move so we have to go where its going to hurt...and where we’re going is into the domestic market place...we are going to the buyers of their products”.
Massachusetts voters appear to defeat assisted suicide
Steven Ertelt - LifeNews
Voters in Massachusetts appear to have prevented the state from becoming the third to legalize assisted suicide when they considered Question 2 at the ballot box today. With 87% of all votes recorded, Question 2 is behind 51-49 percent, losing by about 29,000 votes out of approximately 2.5 million cast. The Catholic Church was among the most outspoken opponents of Question 2. Boston Cardinal Sean O’Malley urged parishioners to vote against the measure in a special homily that was broadcast to all parishes in the archdiocese.
Lotto warning: 'friends, family, money can disappear quick'
Stephanie Anderson - Cooma Express
Winning the lottery might seem like a dream come true, but a windfall can cause as many problems as it solves, warn financial advisors. Co-owner of Milestone Financial Services Darren Laudenbach said an influx in funds could create all sorts of strains on relationships, as friends and family come out of the woodwork armed with expectations.
Andrew Stoner urges action on diabetes perfect storm
There are approximately 366 million people around the world who have diabetes. Of this, 1.15 million Australians have been officially diagnosed with the disease, equivalent to the entire city of Adelaide. Perhaps even more alarmingly, the NSW diabetes population is approximately 410,000, a group of people larger than the nation’s capital, Canberra. Of this, 1.15 million Australians have been officially diagnosed with the disease, equivalent to the entire city of Adelaide.
Abuse 'routine' in indigenous schools
Education Queensland is looking into a criminology professor's claims a teacher gave students sticks to ward off sexual abuse in school toilets. Professor Steven Smallbone, director of the Griffith Youth Forensic Services, has told Queensland's child protection inquiry there's evidence sexual abuse is occurring quite routinely in a remote indigenous Queensland school, including in the classroom.
Voters in the dark over Greens
Voters are largely in the dark about the Australian Greens, with almost 50 per cent unable to express an opinion on the performance of its leader, Tasmanian senator Christine Milne. The latest Essential poll released on Wednesday shows 33 per cent of voters disapprove of the job Senator Milne is doing as Greens leader. But 47 per cent said they did not know leaving only 20 per cent approving of her performance.
Labor set to suspend Roozendaal
Sean Nicholls - Sydney Morning Herald
The NSW MP and former treasurer Eric Roozendaal is set to be suspended from the Labor Party following his appearance before the Independent Commission Against Corruption. The opposition leader, John Robertson, has written to the general secretary of the NSW Labor Party, Sam Dastyari, requesting the suspension until the ICAC hands down its findings. Mr Roozendaal will also be barred from attending caucus meetings and participating in party decisions for as long as his suspension is in place.
Nauru hunger strike continues
Most asylum seekers in Nauru's offshore processing centre are still eating regular meals, despite claims from a refugee advocate 300 detainees are on a hunger strike. Ian Rintoul, of the Refugee Action Coalition, says about 300 of the 377 asylum seekers on Nauru are involved. But the immigration department denies the claim, saying at least 200 meals had been claimed at eating times and a large volume of snacks had been given out to transferees.
Religious Freedom & Persecution
Christian suffering in Syria
The slow agony of Christian communities: the alarm bells being sounded are falling on deaf ears in the international community. In recent days news agencies published the story about the death of the last remaining Christian in the city of Homs, a city that has undergone a religious “clean up” by Islamic rebels. Elias Mansour, 84, a Greek Orthodox Christian, had not wanted to abandon his house in Via Wadi Sayeh because he had to look after his handicapped son. The neighbourhood in which he lived was the scene of violent clashes. An Orthodox priest is looking for his son, whose whereabouts are unknown.
Police banned from marching in uniform at Gay Pride in Adelaide
Sam Kelton - Adelaide Now
South Australian police officers will be banned from marching in uniform in the Gay Pride March in Adelaide this Saturday, despite more than 2400 signatures petitioning otherwise. Online equality group AllOut.org, wh ch is behind the petition, hit out at Police Commissioner Gary Burns, saying SA officers should be free to follow Melbourne and Sydney's example, where police can march in uniform at gay pride rallies. "Allowing law enforcement to show their support in uniform sends an important message to everyone watching," co-founder of AllOut Andre Banks said.