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.



Charities & NFP

New laws set to hit charities

Emma Altschwager - Eastern Courier Messenger

Under-resourced volunteer associations fear changes to workplace safety laws will put them under extra pressure and force them to scale back services. The groups feared the new Work, Health and Safety Bill, which was expected to be debated in Parliament this week, would see an increase in the level of formal training they were required to provide, as well as increased insurance costs, the Eastern Courier Messenger reports.

Children & Family

More sex charges against childcare worker

A Sydney childcare worker, who police say won the trust of his alleged victims and their families, faces more child sex assault charges after two more boys accused him of touching them. The 24-year-old man chose not to appear in Sutherland Local Court today, when the new allegations came to light.


Legal change may allow killer games

Imre Salusinszky – The Australian

Computer games in which the player has virtual sex with a prostitute before killing her, or moves through a school cafeteria shooting helpless students, could become available in Australia under a new classification system planned by the nation's attorneys-general. Concerned over the changes, NSW Attorney-General Greg Smith has written to his state and federal counterparts warning that the new system must not dilute laws by giving banned video games a new R18+ rating.

Drugs & Alcohol

Women suffer faster alcohol abuse damage


Women alcoholics suffer damage to the part of their brain that controls moods, impulses and sleep three times faster than their male counterparts, a Swedish study has shown. Women suffer a 50 per cent reduction in the so-called serotonin function in their brain after four years of excessive drinking, while men show the same amount of damage after 12 years of alcohol abuse, according to the study by researchers at Gothenburg University.


Robertson calls for halt on new coal seam gas licences

Ben Cubby, Sean Nicholls - Muswellbrook Chronicle

The Opposition Leader, John Robertson, is calling for the suspension of the issuing of any new coal seam gas exploration licences in NSW, including expansion of current operations, while an ''ultra-tight regulatory framework'' is established. Mr Robertson said a levy could be placed on industry to pay for ''independent scientific research of the effects of coal seam gas mining''.


Judge attacks gambling while sentencing a Newcastle drug dealer


The sentencing judge for a jailed Newcastle businesswoman has given a stinging assessment of gambling, blaming it for turning decent people into criminals. 57 year old Anne Margaret Maddison had gambling debts of up to three-thousand dollars a week when she was arrested for dealing in May this year.

Defiant Malcolm Turnbull taking a gamble over Tony Abbott's gaming policy

Simon Benson and Patrick Lion - The Daily Telegraph

Malcolm Turnbull is openly defying Opposition Leader Tony Abbott over his new direction on gaming policy. In a video tribute from anti-gambling advocate Tim Costello posted on Mr Turnbull's website, Mr Costello praises Mr Turnbull for his "leadership" in backing tough reforms on problem gambling.


Homeless portraits inspire new hope

Kathy Evans – The Australian

Artists offer a glimpse into the lives of those who have travelled the hard road. Cristel knows what it is like to be invisible. Homeless at 15, she slipped like a shadow between the cracks of the system, living rough on the streets below the sight-line of well-heeled commuters.


Most people want race discrimination removed from Constitution

Patricia Karvelas – The Australian

Research commissioned by the advisory panel on indigenous recognition in the Constitution has found an overwhelming majority support the removal of sections of the Constitution that permit discrimination on the basis of race. The findings could pave the way for more dramatic change to the nation's guiding document.

Evidence backs NT intervention, Macklin insists

Lauren Wilson and Patricia Karvelas – The Australian

Indigenous Affairs Minister Jenny Macklin has seized on an independent evaluation of the Northern Territory Emergency Response to justify the Gillard government's decision to continue key planks of the intervention, declaring that communities felt safer than they did four years ago. Ms Macklin said the report was a "critical body of evidence" that complemented the views expressed by Aboriginal people in the Territory during the government's recent six-week public consultation.


Anglican Church's Peter Catt backs gay civil unions at Queensland parliamentary hearing

The Courier Mail – Koren Helbig

The Anglican Church of Australia's Very Reverend Peter Catt says a same-sex marriage Bill would not deny or denigrate the legitimacy of marriage. Addressing the parliamentary hearing on same-sex marriage on behalf of the church's social responsibilities committee, Dr Catt said civil unions instead extended the liberties of same or opposite-sex couples.

Same sex unions bill latest

Sky News

A lobby group opposing same-sex civil unions in Queensland has protested a parliamentary committee's acceptance of a flood of public submissions, because they could be from outside the state. The committee has been hit with a deluge of almost 5000 submissions in the 12 days since the public was invited to comment. The volume of one- or two-line emails breaks new ground for a Queensland parliamentary committee and they would not hold as much weight as longer submissions, the acting chairman, Labor MP Dean Wells, told a public hearing in Brisbane on Thursday.

Qld parliamentary inquiry hears gay civil unions arguments

Jessica van Vonderen – ABC NEWS VIDEO

A parliamentary inquiry hears from a Catholic priest who jokingly says gay civil unions in Queensland will discriminate against people in threesomes.

Labor's Right warns of electoral backlash over gay marriage

James Massola - The Australian

Labor's powerful Catholic Right has warned the party faces electoral annihilation if it embraces gay marriage in its platform, as sections of the Left push for outright endorsement of same-sex unions rather than a conscience vote on the issue. Right-wing powerbroker Joe De Bruyn said adopting the “extreme” agenda of the Australian Greens would alienate everyday Australians.

Prostitution & Sex Trafficking

Council worker 'accepted brothels' bribes' to fund gambling addiction

Norrie Ross - Herald Sun

A council official took bribes from operators of striptease joints and illegal brothels in inner Melbourne to fund his pathological gambling habit, a court heard today. Ken Wolfe, who was Yarra City Council's senior enforcement officer, would warn the brothels they were to be raided and told the legal premises if a licence inspection was planned, prosecutor Michael Roper said.

Religious Freedom & Persecution

Copts worried about future

David Ignatius - The Australian

Coptic Christians are worried about their future in the new Egypt, as I could see last Thursday night at a political rally in a poor Coptic neighbourhood here known as Garbage City. Gathered in an alleyway framed by heaps of trash, and Christian symbols decorating every nearby wall, the residents heard a simple message: To protect their families, Christians must vote in the parliamentary elections that begin late this month. Otherwise, Egypt may be controlled by the Muslim Brotherhood, which is mobilising its own supporters.

Eritrean refugees face imminent repatriation from Egypt and high risk of persecution on return

Michael Ireland - ASSIST News Service

A group of 118 Eritrean refugees are facing deportation from a detention center in Aswan, Egypt, either today or tomorrow, (Nov. 9 or 10) according to Italian NGO Agenzia Habeshia, after detention center officials issued notifications of imminent deportation in the past week. Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) says that while all the refugees risk severe persecution if returned to Eritrea, ten of them occupied key positions within the Eritrean regime before they fled the country, and their lives would be in extreme danger should they be returned.