Muslim bridges

19 programs across the country have been developed to cement good relationships and build trust between Muslim communities and police services. It is part of the Australian Human Rights Commission’s Community Policing Partnerships Program and is done in partnership with the Australian Multicultural Foundation.

It is funded by the Federal Government’s National Action Plan, which aims to promote social harmony and to counteract discrimination and misinformation about Muslim Australians. Race Discrimination Commissioner Tom Calma said: “Racism, discrimination and religious hatred are all toxic viruses with the potential to eat away at the core of Australia’s multicultural society,” See: http://www.humanrights.gov.au/about/media/media_releases/2009/25_09.html

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POSTED 11 May 2009
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Mother’s Day call

The WA Government is urging WA mothers to consider becoming a foster carer this Mother’s Day. They are also calling on all politicians to help find foster carers. The Government is on a recruitment drive to find up to 250 foster carers across WA to cope with the 12% increase a year in those needing foster care. More than 3000 children are now in the care of the State-double that of 10 years ago. There are 905 non-relative foster carers in WA. Since the campaign started the Government has received 500 calls from people wanting to know more about foster care. For more information ring the foster carer hotline on 1800 024 453 or visit the department’s website at http://www.childprotection.wa.gov.au
See: http://www.mediastatements.wa.gov.au/Pages/Results.aspx?ItemID=131750
http://www.mediastatements.wa.gov.au/Pages/Results.aspx?ItemID=131613

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POSTED 1 May 2009
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Labor’s marriage

The Australian Christian Lobby says that the Labor Party has reaffirmed its commitment to marriage between a man and woman in its draft national platform. The party is consulting its members on the policies in the lead-up to its July national conference. The ACL welcomed the marriage platform being restated in Labor’s draft platform and looks forward to this being reaffirmed in its national conference. The party will be holding a consultation in Perth on May 6. See page 92 of the Labor document for details: http://alp.org.au/download/now/consultation_draft_national_platform.pdf

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POSTED 1 May 2009
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Family support

Families Minister Jenny Macklin said the Federal Government would spend $100m over 2 years to assist families dealing with relationship difficulties including $9.7m for support in WA. The services will be delivered through 60 early intervention services, 40 family relationship centres and 30 post separation services. See: http://www.jennymacklin.fahcsia.gov.au/internet/jennymacklin.nsf/content/100m_famcare22april09.htm

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POSTED 1 May 2009
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Euthanasia

A bid to legalise voluntary euthanasia for the terminally ill in WA appears to be gaining momentum. 14 Upper House MPs have given their in-principal support. The West Australian on April 23, 2009, p13 said that incoming Greens MLC Robin Chapple was approaching MPs from all sides in a bid to introduce a co-sponsored Private Members Bill. Chapple introduced similar legislation in 2005 that lapsed before it was debated.
See: http://www.thewest.com.au/default.aspx?MenuId=77&ContentID=137748

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POSTED 1 May 2009
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PNG/Abortion Aid

International abortion providers Marie Stopes International (MSI)is planning to seek funding from the Australian Government to promote abortion in PNG following the Rudd Governments decision to remove an exemption on abortion aid put in place by John Howard. This is despite the fact that abortion is illegal in PNG except for the preservation of the mother’s life. MSI spokesman Ary Laufer said: “what I would hope is that we would be able to provide training for doctors throughout the country to determine what is a life-threatening situation for women”. In otherwords, MSI wants to use Australian aid funds to undermine the PNG law on abortion by persuading doctors to perform abortions.
Meanwhile MSI has held photo exhibition this month in the PNG National Parliament taken in a photo competition it held for people aged 15-24. The competition, through the MSI PhotoVoice Project is ‘offering a new and exciting way to increase awareness of sexual and reproductive health issues’. MSI uses the PhotoVoice project in a number of countries. MSI has involved 7 PNG Church federations in the PhotoVoice Project including Anglican, Baptist, Catholic, Seven Day Adventists, United, Lutheran and Salvation Army churches.

Sources: the Coalition for the Defence of Human Life May 2009 Newsletter & http://www.mariestopes.org/ShowContent.aspx?id=519

Action: Saltshakers is asking people to ask the Coalition if they will re-instate the abortion ban if they are re-elected. Write to Malcolm Turnbull (liberal) and Warren Truss (national) Parliament House, Canberra, ACT 2600

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POSTED 1 May 2009
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Marriage equality

Lobby group Australian Marriage Equality (AME) is developing a database of employers that recognise the same-sex ‘marriage’ of their employees. Westpac/St George was the latest to join the list. AME said it was calling on the Australian Government to also join its employers list which includes ANZ, CWB, Qantas, Air Canada, Seek and Telstra.
To see the list and find out more: http://www.australianmarriageequality.com/employers.htm

Action: Saltshakers is asking people to write to these companies, especially if you do business with them. Ask them not to recognise same-sex ‘marriages’ since the Australian Government has, at present, refused to grant legal recognition of overseas same-sex ‘marriages’. Ask them why they are going against the laws of this nation and undermining the Government’s position.

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POSTED 1 May 2009
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Other agenda

The Australian Christian Lobby is deeply concerned about Race Discrimination Commissioner Tom Calma’s agenda when he attended at tax-payers expense a UN Conference in Geneva that was boycotted by the Australian Government. The ACL said it raised further questions over Calma’s suitability to drive the Australian Human Rights Commission’s so-called Freedom of Religion Project.
See: http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,25373021-601,00.html

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POSTED 1 May 2009

Internet Filtering

The Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy announced that Optus will take part in the Australian Government’s Internet filtering pilot. Optus is the 2nd largest ISP in Australia. It joins Primus Telecommunications, Highway 1, Nelson Bay Online, Netforce, OMNIconnect, TECH 2U and Webshield. A survey by Generation Next parenting seminars found that 1 million minors were allowed unsupervised internet access.
For Conroy’s press release and info: http://www.minister.dbcde.gov.au/media/media_releases/2009/027
Generation Next survey: http://www.news.com.au/perthnow/story/0,,25303028-5005370,00.html

Action: The Australian Christian Lobby is asking people to share first hand stories of the damage porn causes which would be treated with the strictest confidence , without revealing identities to convince politicians and others of the harm the scourge of pornography is causing.

Action: The ACL is also encouraging people to use this year’s National Day of Thanksgiving May 30 (See What’s on) to thank Conroy for his efforts to filter pornography and violence from the internet at service provide level. Conroy has received a torrent of opposition from the porn industry and sections of the internet industry and expressions of thanks to him would be beneficial.

ACL contact details (mark confidential- att Chief of Staff): chiefofstaff@acl.org.au

Australian Christian Lobby
4 Campion St
Deakin ACT
2600

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POSTED 1 May 2009
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Freo by-election

Jullie Hollett is standing for the Christian Democratic Party in this Fremantle by-election for State Parliament to be held May 16, which comes on the retirement of Jim McGinty.
To find out more about Jullie visit her website: http://fremantlealive.com.au/
See her speak: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zcg11W0izJs

Action: The CDP is calling for donations for the campaign and helpers on polling day.

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POSTED 1 May 2009
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