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Pages tagged "Coalition"
MR: Coalition urged to reject Commission of Audit recommendation to break chaplaincy promise
· May 02, 2014 10:00 AM
For release: Friday May 2, 2014
The Australian Christian Lobby is urging the Coalition to reject a Commission of Audit report recommendation to break its election promise on school chaplaincy.
Managing Director Lyle Shelton said the Coalition
before the election to continue the National School Chaplaincy Program in Schools to support the emotional wellbeing of students.
“The Commission of Audit has recommended abolishing the National School Chaplaincy Program despite its enormous success and widespread support,” Mr Shelton said.
“A survey of public school principals found that 98 per cent said chaplaincy was a proactive, unique, effective, and important contribution to school morale, and that it should be continued.
“This is in addition to widespread community support for chaplains.”
Mr Shelton said that the Chaplaincy Program costs relatively little for the large impact it has on school children.
“Abolishing national funding for chaplaincy will provide only small savings for the government while removing an important support available to hundreds of thousands of Australian children,” he said.
“Balancing the budget is important, but even more so for community trust in politics are election commitments.
“There is a great expectation in the community that the Coalition’s election commitment on chaplaincy will be kept.”
Mr Shelton noted that the Finance Minister last night said Commission of Audit recommendations that breached election commitments would not be implemented.
However, a Commission of Audit recommendation to de-couple aid from Gross National Income in breach of an election commitment had already been adopted.
ACL's MD talks about Coalition's legislation to repeal pokie machine reforms
· December 10, 2013 11:00 AM
Lyle Shelton is the Managing Director of the Australia Christian Lobby. In this interview with the ACL's Katherine Spackman he talks about legislation introduced by the Coalition last week in Parliament to repeal the Gillard Government's pokie machine reforms that were passed in November 2012.
MR: Poll shows no election mandate for same-sex marriage
· September 14, 2013 10:00 AM
For release: Saturday 14th September 2013
Changing the Marriage Act was a low order issue with voters at last Saturday’s election according to a poll conducted this week for the Australian Christian Lobby.
Just 13 per cent of voters said it was in their top three issues when deciding who to vote for with the issue rating 9
overall out of 13 issues put to 927 respondents.
According to the poll conducted by JWS Research, same-sex marriage made the top three list of just 4pc of Coalition voters. It was not a top three issue for 72pc of Greens and 85pc of Labor voters.
ACL Managing Director Lyle Shelton said the poll confirmed what MPs have been saying for the past three years in Parliament.
“During the many same-sex marriage debates in the last Parliament MPs consistently said same-sex marriage was simply not a priority for people in their electorates. Despite Kevin Rudd and Labor elevating the issue to front and centre of the election campaign, this sentiment has not changed,” Mr Shelton said.
“Same-sex marriage had an extremely high media profile during the election and yet it still failed to register as an important issue for the overwhelming majority of voters.
“The fact that Kevin Rudd made it an election issue and lost so convincingly, and these figures of just 4pc of Coalition voters supporting same sex marriage, mean Tony Abbott must maintain support for man-woman marriage as a party policy,” Mr Shelton said.
The poll also found support for changing the Marriage Act had slipped dramatically. Most polls had shown around 63pc support for same-sex marriage but the JWS poll found just 45pc of people thought the Marriage Act should be changed.
Thirty-eight per cent of people were opposed to law change with 17pc undecided.
“Despite years of high-profile campaigning and the demonising of those speaking up for man-woman marriage, support for changing the Marriage Act appears to be slipping,” Mr Shelton said.
Gershon Nimbalker from Baptist World Aid on the Political Spot about cuts to overseas aid
· September 10, 2013 10:00 AM
Gershon Nimbalker is the Advocacy Manager at Baptist World Aid Australia. In this interview with the ACL's Katherine Spackman he talks about the aid cuts the Coalition announced in the lead up to the election.
MR: Labor-Green preference deal would damage Labor's senate candidates
· August 14, 2013 10:00 AM
Wednesday 14th August 2013
The Australian Christian Lobby is urging the Labor Party to be on a unity ticket with the Coalition in not giving preferences to the Greens.
ACL’s Managing Director Lyle Shelton welcomed Opposition Leader Tony Abbott’s announcement to preference Greens candidates last in the lower house and urged Labor to do likewise – particularly in the senate.
“Labor has a choice to woo back the Christian constituency which helped elect Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in 2007 or choose the Greens which have significantly damaged Labor’s primary vote and brand,” he said.
“Labor's association with the Greens' social agenda during minority government had damaged its standing with many mainstream voters.
“Labor has many Senate candidates who are attractive to Christian voters but a preference deal with the Greens would be a turn-off.
"If Labor preferences help the Greens, particularly in the Senate, it will be difficult for many Christians to support the many ALP Senate candidates who are attractive to Christian voters.
"Greens' influence in Parliament and pursuit of fringe agendas has distracted politics from important issues facing the nation," he said.
MR: ACL welcomes Abbott’s clarity on marriage
· May 04, 2013 10:00 AM
For release: Saturday, 4th May, 2013
The Australian Christian Lobby today welcomed comments from Opposition Leader Tony Abbott that he did not expect the issue of same-sex marriage to come up in the life of the next Parliament should the Coalition win the election.
ACL Managing Director Lyle Shelton said the Parliament had dealt decisively with the issue last September after a very long public debate in which MPs had surveyed their electorates.
“I think Australians are keen to move on from this issue and that they do not expect it to be occupying the time of the next Parliament, given the enormous time already spent,” Mr Shelton said.
“Uncertainty in the Coalition Party room on marriage would cause people who care about marriage to consider voting for minor parties who had a clear position,” Mr Shelton said.
“ACL commends the Coalition’s resolve to keep marriage as party policy and to ensure voting on it is the same as other important policy matters.
“Certainly amongst political realists in the Parliament there is no appetite for another debate on redefining marriage.”
Mr Shelton said there was pronounced disappointment in the Christian constituency that Labor had broken its election promise on marriage and changed its party policy.
However, he said Labor members who voted against redefining marriage could expect support from the Christian constituency at the election, although the chance of this will obviously be confused by the party position.
“It is fine for proponents of redefining marriage to keep agitating but I think there also comes a point where people should accept the verdict of the Parliament. If they can’t, they should support it being put to a referendum of the Australian people.”
Make your pledge to 'finish the race' and halve world poverty by 2015
· February 21, 2013 11:00 AM
Australia was one of the 189 member states of the United Nations that had signed the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in 2000 to halve world poverty by 2015.
At the last election both Labor and the Coalition had committed to boost foreign aid to 0.5 per cent of gross national income (GNI) by 2015-2016, yet both parties have backed down on its commitment. The government’s commitment stands at just 0.35 per cent of GNI - well short of what is needed to eradicate poverty and help developing nations implement poverty-reducing policies.
From the beginning ACL has lobbied for government to reach the target as outlined by the MDGs and endorsed Australia's willingness to be more generous to the poor. ACL committed itself to communicating parties' election promises to the Christian constituency, including the
ALP's promise not to cut aid
In the lead up to this year's federal election campaign, the Australian Christian Lobby will be asking major political parties to recommit to the MDG goals and specifically the 0.7 per cent of GNI. Micah Challenge has launched its own campaign to 'Finish the Race' - calling on Australian leaders to 'finish what we started' and do our fair share towards achieving the MDGs and halving global poverty by 2015.
Join with Micah Challenge, churches, and other Christian organisations in speaking out against poverty and injustice, and encourage our leaders to act in fulfilling our commitment to reducing world poverty.
Make a pledge today by visiting
MR: ACL backs push to better protect basic human rights
· February 20, 2013 11:00 AM
Wednesday, 20th February 2013
The Australian Christian Lobby has backed the push by shadow Attorney-General George Brandis to ensure that basic human rights are better protected.
ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace agreed with concerns raised by Senator Brandis that the Australian Human Rights Commission is focused too much on anti-discrimination to the detriment of basic freedoms such as speech and religion.
“It is important basic human rights are not subordinated to other agendas. Where other right claims conflict with long-established human rights such as freedom of religion, freedom of speech and freedom of the press, it should be a greater priority of the Australian Human Rights Commission to defend and advocate for these,” he said.
“Whilst non-discrimination and equality are important, it is also important that these do not subordinate human rights which make for a free society.
“It is absolutely essential for free speech and the freedom of religion that people are able to express and live their views about family, marriage and life in the public square without fear of being subject to an anti-discrimination claim because their views differ from others.
“ACL believes human rights are paramount to a well-functioning society and that Christian values contributed to some of the most significant progress in the development of human rights as evidenced through the anti-slavery and civil rights movements,” Mr Wallace said.
Mr Wallace urged the Government to also consider the direction of the AHRC and re-orientate its work to protecting basic human rights.
Nick Overton on the Political Spot
· February 05, 2013 11:00 AM
Nick Overton is the Acting Chief of Staff at the Australian Christian Lobby. He spoke to the ACL's Katherine Spackman about the West Australian election on the 9th of March.
MR: ACL urges Coalition not to scrap Labor’s increased refugee intake
· November 23, 2012 11:00 AM
For release: Friday, November 23, 2012
The Australian Christian Lobby has urged a future Coalition Government not to scrap the Houston panel’s recommended increase to the humanitarian intake of refugees to 20,000.
ACL Managing Director Jim Wallace said he understood the need to find savings in the budget but believed it was in our national interest to be generous to refugees.
“ACL commends the Coalition for seeking to preference refugees languishing in camps above those who can afford to pay people smugglers but opposed moves to cut back the refugee intake.
“It is important that Australia sends a message to people seeking passage on a boat with smugglers that Australia will act justly and generously towards those in camps who have already been designated as refugees by the UNHCR.
“Apart from being the right thing to do, increasing the humanitarian intake also sends a clear message to people smugglers and UNHCR-designated refugees in camps that Australia is serious about fairness,” Mr Wallace said.
“The cost of settling an increased humanitarian intake of people should not be the only calculation as refugees do tend to become hard-working and productive members of our community.
“Quite apart from our national interest considerations, a comparatively wealthy nation like Australia can and should do more to alleviate the global humanitarian crisis of displaced people.”
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