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

Pregnant jockeys fight for rights

Simon Lauder - ABC

The horse racing industry is more reliant on female jockeys than ever, but the dangers involved mean women have to stop racing while they're pregnant, and that makes them ineligible for the Federal Government's paid maternity leave scheme. The Australian Jockey's Association is now calling for the rules of the scheme to be changed.

Response to child abuse revamped in NSW


NSW agencies are revamping how they communicate with concerned parents when a child sex abuse case is revealed within an institution. Detective Superintendent Maria Rustja, commander of the NSW Police child abuse squad, told a national hearing into child sex abuse the investigative and response system across agencies was focused on protecting children so it might not work for all parents.

Drugs & Alcohol

Four more people arrested over Australia's largest illegal tobacco importation syndicate


Police and customs officials have made four more arrests in a major crackdown on one of Australia's largest illegal tobacco importation syndicates. Four people were arrested in Melbourne and charged over the importation of cigarettes and tobacco from countries including Indonesia and the United Arab Emirates. Six people were charged earlier this year. Victoria Police Assistant Commissioner Steve Fontana says over the course of the investigation, 71 tonnes of tobacco and 80 million tobacco sticks were seized.

Heath groups backing plan for needle exchange

Larissa Nicholson - The Canberra Times

In a move praised by health bodies, the ACT government has reconfirmed its commitment to trialling a needle and syringe program in the territory's prison.

New research finds Australian uni students rely on drugs to help them study

Elise Worthington - ABC

Many Australian university students are relying on performance enhancing drugs to help them boost their averages. The first Australian study into academic doping has found the use of "study drugs" appears to be even more widespread in Australian universities than it is in the United States and Germany.


Fears Queensland's severe drought will lead to more farmer suicides

Stephanie Smail - ABC

There are fears that Queensland's severe drought could trigger even more suicides by farmers. A new study has found 147 farmers committed suicide in Queensland in the decade after the 2000, compared to 92 in New South Wales.

Chlamydia rate high in younger girls: study


A study released at the Australasian Sexual Health Conference in Darwin shows girls as young as 12 are testing positive to the sexually transmitted infection chlamydia. The research found 13 per cent of girls aged 12 to 15 years who were tested had a positive result, a higher proportion than those aged 15 to 24.

Homelessness & Poverty

Bleak future for WA poor as aid dries up

Rachel Siewert - Brisbane times

While Australia is one of the richest nations, 11.8 per cent live in poverty. Photo: Brendan Esposito

"It is a matter of deep shame for a wealthy nation like ours that our unemployment benefits, for example, have been kept deliberately low as a means of humiliating the very people they were originally designed to assist." Those words, from John Falzon have rung truer than ever over the last few weeks, as our nation recognised Anti-Poverty Week and Carers Week. Various reports have shown despite Australia's high median wealth, the rate of poverty in our society continues to grow, and jobseekers and single parents on the Newstart Allowance are particularly vulnerable.


Children as commodities

George Weigel - First Things

The Council of the District of Columbia is considering a bill, sponsored by its most aggressively activist gay member, to legalize surrogate child-bearing in your nation’s capital. Infertility is a heart-rending problem. But solving that problem is not what’s at issue here, for the D.C. surrogacy bill is being pushed by the same people who brought “gay marriage” to the shores of the Potomac River: people who affirm what are, by definition, infertile “marriages.” Moreover, in their determination to deny reality—or perhaps reinvent it—the proponents of the D.C. surrogacy bill have adopted a species of Newspeak that would make George Orwell cringe.

Same-sex marriage laws could be amended ahead of High Court legal challenge

Lisa Cox - The Canberra Times

The ACT government has signaled it could make even more changes to its same-sex marriage law before a federal government challenge to the act is heard by the High Court. The move comes as a key advocate of further changes to the law expressed fears the ACT government had rushed its bill through the Legislative Assembly as “a piece of protest legislation” against the new Coalition federal government.

Same-sex marriage stirs debate among churches

Daily Advertiser

While Member for Burrinjuck Katrina Hodgkinson is keen to hear her constituents’ thoughts on same-sex marriage, Member for Wagga Daryl Maguire says he isn’t getting into the debate just yet. The NSW Legislative Council has been given notice that a Same-Sex Marriage Bill will be introduced to parliament next Thursday.


Minnows threaten Senate havoc

Heath Aston - The Age

Clive Palmer and the micro-parties that will hold the balance of power in the Senate from July are threatening to play havoc with Prime Minister Tony Abbott's legislative agenda if the government gives in to growing calls to reform the voting system.

Religious Freedom & Persecution

Cairo, police fled before the attack on the church of the Virgin Mary

Asia News

The security forces charged with protecting the Christians of the Church of the Virgin Mary in Warraq were not present at the time of the Islamist attack that left four dead and over 20 injured. This was revealed by the Administrative Director of the Coptic community of al- Warraq ( Giza ) , who stated that he saw the guards sent by the Ministry of the Interior leave the building during the massacre .

Anti-Christian violence and the silence of "moderate" Muslims

Piero Gheddo - Asia News

Just as attacks occurred two days ago in Egypt, many more have occurred in Philippines, Central Africa, Mali, Nigeria, and Syria in recent months. Most believers in Allah and the Qur'an are peaceful people who only want to live in peace and freedom. However, why is it that these masses of moderates never protest? Why is it that no Muslim association or group has ever been set up to condemn Salafist violence and terrorists who kill themselves to become "martyrs for Islam"?


Mother urges anti-grooming training for children after YMCA childcare centre abuse

Thomas Oriti - ABC

The mother of a girl who attended a childcare centre in Sydney's south where a worker was jailed for child sex offences has told an inquiry children need to be trained to detect "grooming" behaviour. The Royal Commission into child abuse is examining the case of Jonathan Lord, who is now behind bars for abusing 12 boys during his time at the YMCA centre at Caringbah.

Nick Vujicic asks Paraguay's Congress to kneel and pray during parliament

Jessica Martinez - Christian Post

[Australian] motivational speaker and evangelist Nick Vujicic urged members of the congress in Paraguay to kneel for prayer during a parliament session in which he thanked God for the nation while asking God to forgive their sins.