The ACL compiles a daily media monitoring services of stories of interest relating to children, family, drugs and alcohol, marriage, human rights, religious freedom etc. See here to read what's in the news today.



Children & Family

Spare the rod on child protection
When a child dies in suspicious circumstances, as two-year-old Tanilla Warrick-Deaves did last Saturday on the central coast, it is always troubling, especially when it turns out the family has a long history with child protection authorities.  It is not known how many children have died in similar circumstances since the state's new child protection system began operation 18 months ago amid such high hopes, but the new dawn in child protection is hard to detect.

Dads to have paid parental leave
Dads-to-be will be paid $190 million to take time off work so they can bond with their newborns and help mums change more nappies.  The Father's Day present from taxpayers will be announced today by the Gillard Government under moves to encourage dads to play greater roles in child rearing.


Tear down 'offensive' FCUK sign says Robert Doyle
It's always a pleasure returning to the world's most liveable city. But on Friday - after a quick trip to Canberra - as I drove towards the Bolte Bridge, there it was. As big and offensive as ever. It is on the left: 45m long and 15m high. FCUK. Honestly.  Do the advertisers think this is clever? That the transposition of two letters somehow makes this a sophisticated word play rather than a cheap obscenity?

Neither clever nor funny, it's just offensive
Robert Doyle is right. The FCUK sign that besmirches our cityscape should be torn down.  As the Lord Mayor says in his column on Page 3 of today's Sunday Herald Sun, the giant billboard is neither clever nor funny. It is just offensive.

The studio behind the biggest video game ever made in Australia has shut its doors.
Team Bondi, the maker of LA Noire, has been placed in administration, according to documents filed with ASIC this week.

Drugs & Alcohol

 Safety is the pertinent point
You will recall all the hand-wringing, all the moralising, all the dire predictions when the Sydney safe injecting room was opened at Kings Cross about a decade ago. This week, Melbourne TV journalist Brendan Roberts did a great story comparing the situation in Victoria's capital, where they still don't have a safe place, with our own.

Drug reform in jail: the pointy end of policymaking
The majority of prison inmates in Australia have a history of illicit drug use. Most detainees in the ACT report that their prison sentence was related to drugs. So why would you change the law to enable them to inject illegal substances?  The ACT's Chief Minister Katy Gallagher wants to introduce a needle and syringe program at the Canberra jail as a preventative health measure. The Alexander Maconochie Centre (named after an early prison reformer) was established under the Framework of the Human Rights Act and opened three years ago with a focus on rehabilitation and reform.


 Offshore processing may be impossible, Solicitor-General says
Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has offered to help Prime Minister Julia Gillard overcome new legal hurdles to processing asylum seekers in Papua New Guinea and Nauru.  Solicitor-General Stephen Gageler has confirmed that the High Court ruling that scuttled Labor's Malaysian people swap deal last week has far-reaching implications for all offshore processing.  The advice suggests the court's verdict would make it extremely difficult - if not impossible - for Australia to send asylum seekers to Papua New Guinea's Manus Island, Nauru or any other third country under current migration law.


 Gordon Bradbery to be Lord Mayor
Independent Gordon Bradbery looks set to claim victory in the race for Wollongong lord mayor, with the former Church on the Mall reverend commanding a 10 per cent lead on Liberal challenger John Dorahy with 72 per cent of first preference votes counted.  As vote counting resumes this morning, Mr Bradbery holds 33.9 per cent of the primary vote, while Mr Dorahy has 23.4 per cent.

The question is, what earthly difference can we make?
Jason Fong's question was the runaway winner of the OurSay climate agenda poll. The policy of both major parties is to reduce Australia's carbon dioxide emissions by 5 per cent by 2020, even though both know that, in Jason Fong's words, it will make ''negligible'' difference to global temperatures.  So the question is, why bother? If the key goal of global climate policy is to at least cap temperature increases, what difference can Australian action make? There is a factual answer to the question, and there's a context that is more complicated.