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.




Hacker jailed for abortion files theft

The Australian

A hacker who stole the personal details of 10,000 women from the website of the UK's biggest abortion provider has been sentenced to two years and eight months in jail. James Jeffery, 27, who claimed to be affiliated with the hacking group Anonymous, admitted hacking into the website of the British Pregnancy Advisory Service.

Call to dump anti-abortion health provider

Aleisha Orr - SMH

The Civil Liberties Council of WA is calling on the State Government to reconsider who will get the tender to provide health services at the Midland Health Campus after it was revealed that the preferred option, a Catholic group, refuses to perform procedures such as abortions and vasectomies. The Acting Health Minister yesterday confirmed that religious beliefs were likely to affect what services were provided at the Midland Health Campus which is due to open in 2015. At this stage of negotiations, these procedures would not be carried out at the new hospital because the likely service provider, St John of God Health Care, does not allow their staff to perform them.

Charities & NFP

Sweeping reform to challenge charities

Gina Anderson - SMH

Not-for-Profit organisations providing for people with disabilities will need to undergo significant change with the introduction of a National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) but are they ready for the challenge? The NDIS will transfer decisions about how and where to spend money to the individual and their carers rather than the disability service providers.

Drugs & Alcohol

Judge recommends Schapelle Corby's sentence be reduced by five years


Further details of an Indonesian Supreme Court judge's opinion in relation to Schapelle Corby's clemency bid have emerged, backing a number of other key reports recommending a significant sentence cut. Corby, who was jailed for 20 years in 2004 for attemptinSMH to smuggle 4.1 kilograms of marijuana into Bali in a bodyboard bag, applied for clemency from Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono more than two years ago.

Overseas Aid

Australian aid, and family, help bring a new-wave economy to Aceh

Michael Bachelard - Northern Argus

After eight years of hard work, tsunami aid is paying off. Ibu Rosmani looks around at the chickens, ducks and goats in her modestly sized yard in Aceh as if she herself cannot quite believe what she's saying. "After the tsunami, there were about 50 people living here. And they stayed for a year," she says.


It's a matter of trust for Julia Gillard as Labor support flatlines in Newspoll

Dennis Shannahan - The Australian

Julia Gillard is losing her bitter battle with Tony Abbott for Australia's political leadership after collapses in voter recognition for her trustworthiness, likeability, empathy with voters, strength and ability to manage the economy and national security. As Labor's primary vote remains below 30 per cent, the Opposition Leader has again pegged back Ms Gillard's standing as preferred prime minister, although both leaders continue to be punished by voters.

Suspending Craig Thomson 'an option', says Nicola Roxon

Daily Telegraph

Attorney-General Nicola Roxon says suspending the embattled Federal Labor MP Craig Thomson from the ALP is "an option" that would take the political heat off the Government regarding alleged corruption within the Health Services Union (HSU). It's been alleged Mr Thomson misused a union credit card for prostitutes, lavish meals and cash withdrawals when he was the HSU's national secretary between 2002 and 2007. High-profile human rights lawyer Geoffrey Robertson today said that if Mr Thomson was a member of the British parliament he'd have been suspended already.

Pyne calls on PM to direct Thomson to aid police with inquiries

Kate McClymont - SMH

The embattled Labor MP Craig Thomson has declined to co-operate with a NSW police strike force investigating allegations that while at the Health Services Union, Mr Thomson and his then boss Michael Williamson received secret commissions from a supplier to the union. Mr Thomson said that he and his lawyers had asked detectives from Strike Force Carnarvon to spell out the ''areas they wanted to ask me about''.

ALP sets sights on southern votes with exit of Brown

Daniel Flitton - SMH

Labor is hoping the vanishing ''Brown factor'' will allow it to claw back three or four points on its weak primary vote in southern states. While Labor's woes in Queensland, Western Australia and NSW have dragged down the Gillard government, Bob Brown's decision to depart politics in June has raised hopes of paring back what is seen as an inflated green vote south of the Murray River.

The intergalactic musings of Senator Bob Brown

Babette Francis - Online Opinion

It is tragic that those mocking red-necks (a different less evolved species to green tree-huggers) who have been making fun of Senator Bob Brown's Third Annual Green Oration. have succeeded in driving him from office. Admittedly it was unusual for someone who has instituted an annual oration to deliver it himself, but what Senator Brown had to say was of such moment that he can be excused for taking over the platform himself. Sadly we did not realise it would be the last time he would address us but fortunately we all - except for the aforementioned red-necks - paid deep attention, especially when he addressed us all grandiloquently as "fellow Earthians". That greeting set the tone for the stunning message he had to deliver from Outer Space.

Prostitution & Sex Trafficking

Mega brothel would be in public's interest, court told

Leesha Mckenny - SMH

The developer hoping to build Australia's largest brothel has told the NSW Land and Environment Court the proposal to double the existing business is ''in the public interest''. Stiletto's in Camperdown, owned by the big-time punter Eddie Hayson, wants to spend $12 million to expand from 19 to more than 40 working rooms by building a three-storey extension on an adjoining Parramatta Road block.

Religious Freedom & Persecution

Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani spends 35th birthday behind bars


Today is Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani's birthday, and sources in Iran confirm that he is still alive. Thirty-five years ago, on the 23rd of the Farvardin month of the Persian Calendar, Youcef was born in Iran. Tiffany Barrans, writing for the American Center For Law And Justice (ACLJ) website (, said, "This is the third birthday that Pastor Youcef has been forced to celebrate behind bars, condemned to death in Iran for apostasy - becoming a Christian in a regime governed by Shariah (Islamic) law.


Five irrational myths peddled by lazy atheists

Chris Roe - The Punch

Esteemed cosmologist and popular atheist Lawrence Krauss wrote: “It sometimes surprises me, although it shouldn’t, how religious devotees feel the need to regularly reinforce their own convictions in groups of like-minded individuals”.It is curious then, that he has made the long trip down-under to join the faithless as part of the weekend’s Global Atheists Convention.

Still soldiering on


Benedict XVI's analysis of the crisis of Western culture is outstanding in its depth and clarity. Although insiders say that Benedict is slowing down, he lives at a pace which would kill younger men: a relentless succession of trips in Italy, trips overseas, daily speeches, a multitude of official visitors and the constant pressure of global attention. And Joseph Ratzinger is still a one-man ideas factory. Since he was elected in 2005, he has written two books of his own as the theologian Joseph Ratzinger, has collaborated in a book-length interview, has written three encyclicals (more or less book-length theological position papers) and his collected addresses have been compiled into several books. Google, which is supposed to be the premier company for fostering creativity, ought to engage him as a consultant.