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Pages tagged "ACL National"
Parliament should resist Greens’ stalling tactics on same-sex marriage debate
· August 20, 2012 10:00 AM
For Release: Monday August 20, 2012
The Australian Christian Lobby has welcomed news that the same-sex marriage debate is finally coming to an end in the Federal Parliament.
ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace said that once Parliamentarians in the House of Representatives had finished their speeches this week the matter should be brought to a vote.
“There is a relatively light legislative program this week so there is no reason it could not be resolved this week or early next week,” ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace said.
“I am concerned that the Greens are trying to drag the issue out in the hope of legislating by fatigue.
“Three Parliamentary inquiries have found no substantive discrimination against same-sex people under Australian law. It is time the Parliament voted and we moved on.”
MR: Time to resolve gay marriage and move on
· August 19, 2012 10:00 AM
For Release: Sunday August 19, 2012
The Australian Christian Lobby has renewed its call for a vote in the Federal Parliament to resolve the long-running same-sex marriage debate.
ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace said the debate had dragged on for years through three Parliamentary inquiries and there were now three bills before the Parliament.
“I think everyone is tired of this debate. MPs know it doesn’t rate in their electorates.
“Last week Labor stared down the Greens on border protection. This week the Parliament should stare them down on protecting the Marriage Act, as both Labor and Coalition promised to do before the 2010 election.
“It is clear that the Greens and gay activists do not want to accept the likely outcome of the democratic process and are continuing to stall for time.”
With a relatively light legislative program, this week would be ideal to resolve this issue and move on, Mr Wallace said.
MR: Lack of consultation means vilification laws should be put on hold
· August 19, 2012 10:00 AM
For Release: Sunday August 19, 2012
The ACT's proposed religious vilification laws should be put on hold until consultation was held with religious communities, according to the Australian Christian Lobby.
ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace said it was extremely disappointing that such controversial laws were being rushed into the Assembly this week when there had been no consultation at all with Canberra's Christian constituency.
Similar laws in Victoria were extremely controversial and led to protracted and expensive legal action which proved counterproductive to social cohesion, Mr Wallace said.
"These same laws were deemed completely unnecessary by the former New South Wales Labor Government which rejected them out of hand.
“While no right thinking person supports vilification of anyone, creating a big legal stick to wield if groups felt vilified would end up suppressing free speech,” Mr Wallace said.
"In a society such as ours which determines its values through the contest of ideas, there needs to be the freedom to engage in robust debate without fear of a legal process being initiated by someone who feels offended.
"The ACT, like the rest of Australia, has defamation laws and these should apply when free speech crosses the line and causes injury."
Mr Wallace said it was wrong that offensive posters had been circulated targeting Canberra's Muslim community but vilification laws were not the way to address this.
MR: ACL welcomes Govt support for ban on donor anonymity
· August 16, 2012 10:00 AM
Thursday, August 16, 2012
The Australian Christian Lobby has welcomed the Federal Government’s support of a donor-conceived child to know its biological parent.
While a State issue, ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace welcomed the government’s acknowledgement in its response yesterday to the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee Report, to ban donor anonymity.
“The best way the Commonwealth can show support for this principle is to resist the push to redefine marriage and ensure that wherever possible children are raised by their biological parents,” he said.
“The government gave in principle support to the committee’s recommendation that there be a prohibition on donor anonymity which shows the government recognises the need for the individual’s interests to be protected – specifically to know who their biological parents are.
“The ACL believes children should, where possible, have the opportunity to be raised by their biological parents and for the government to acknowledge the innate desire of an individual to know their heritage.
“Last year’s inquiry was instigated by people, now adults, who were conceived using Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART). While most of these people grew up in a family with a mother and a father, the pain of having their biological identity hidden from them forced the inquiry.
“Compounding their sense of genetic bewilderment was the inability to know the medical history of their donor father.
“Donating sperm is not like donating blood – it’s about creating another human being and considering their needs and wants which includes the right to be raised by their father.
“Instead we’re allowing a practice to continue that goes against the organic, biological way children are brought into the world,” he said.
Mr Wallace said the ACL acknowledged the heartfelt desire of couples to have a child but it should never be without considering the rights of the child to have the best start possible with its mum and dad.
Mr Wallace said donor conception practices were increasingly being used by singles and lesbian couples and proposed same-sex marriage legislation would encourage the practice even more.
“This has been the main concern of the ACL – the impact of same-sex marriage on the understanding of family and having children being brought into the world and then deliberately denied their biological parent, something no government should facilitate,” he said.
MR: ACL welcomes expert panel’s recommendations on asylum-seekers
· August 13, 2012 10:00 AM
Monday, 13th August, 2012
The Australian Christian Lobby has welcomed the Independent expert panel’s recommendations on asylum seekers, as reported in Angus Houston’s briefing to the press.
The ACL’s Managing Director Jim Wallace said the recommendations strikes the right balance between compassion and the need to end the people smuggler’s trade.
“The ACL welcome’s the panel’s advice to process refugees on Nauru and PNG’s Manus Island and to continue to develop the Malaysian solution as a pilot model for a regional solution, provided, necessary protections can be ensured,” he said.
Mr Wallace said the committee’s recommendations on increasing the refugee intake to 20,000 immediately is a sensible idea, which is Labor policy and has been considered by the Coalition.
“The ACL has long advocated that Australia raise its humanitarian intake and that that be sourced from refugee camps, which would send a clear message that those in most need, the UNHCR-designated refugees, will be treated with real priority and generosity,” he said.
Mr Wallace said it was imperative for the Parliament to act on these recommendations and condemned the Greens for continuing to demand onshore processing when it clearly provides the magnet that sustains the dangerous people smuggling industry.
“It’s time for all parties to use this opportunity for genuine reform by government - too many people have died between Indonesia and Christmas Island for the political impasse over asylum seeker policy to be allowed to continue any longer,” he said.
MR: Labor has chance to equal Coalition by protecting marriage
· August 11, 2012 10:00 AM
For release: Sunday, 12th August, 2012
The Federal Government must intervene to stop Australia’s marriage laws from becoming a ‘hodge podge’ according to the Australian Christian Lobby.
The call follows announcements by the South Australian and ACT Governments to introduce homosexual marriage or marriage-mimicking laws.
ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace said Prime Minister Julia Gillard went to the 2010 election
promising to up-hold marriage
between a man and a woman.
“Gay activists and Green politicians are now leading Labor States like Tasmania and South Australia by the nose towards homosexual ‘marriage’,” Mr Wallace said.
“Integrity does matter in politics and Federal Labor could choose to equal the Coalition’s integrity on marriage by intervening to stop South Australia, Tasmania and the ACT from legislating a new definition of marriage.
“The Coalition’s resolve to keep its election promise is to be applauded, despite the Greens and activists wanting it broken.
“The Government needs to act swiftly before Australia ends up with different marriage laws between States and the Commonwealth.
“The Attorney General must defend marriage against attempts by States and Territories to redefine it, even if it means going to the High Court,” Mr Wallace said.
“The Government also must signal that it will use the powers of the Parliament to overturn any marriage-mimicking law passed in the coming week by the Greens and Labor in the ACT.”
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