Left Behind Children

A report card from UNICEF, comparing the performance of OECD countries shows that Australia is not doing as well as other developed countries in taking care of its vulnerable children. The report, ‘The Children Left Behind’, rated Australia’s performance below average in more than half of the 35 health, education and prosperity measures it uses to compare countries.

For more from the ACL: http://australianchristianlobby.org.au/2010/12/report-card-shows-australia-failing-to-promote-children%e2%80%99s-interests/

To read report: http://www.unicef-irc.org/publications/619

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POSTED 27 Dec 2010
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International News

  • EU intolerance

  • Irish abortion
    Ireland’s anti-abortion laws breach European human rights law, the European Court of Human Rights said in a landmark and binding case that could have implications for other European countries, reports the Catholic News Service. For story: http://www.cathnews.com/article.aspx?aeid=24564

  • Indonesia closures
    The Australian Prayer Network reports that Islamic groups and local governments in Indonesia have closed 110 churches during the past three years. Radical Muslim groups coerce local governments to send letters to churches prohibiting any activities. When the church does not comply they are often burned down or otherwise damaged. The Indonesian Human Rights Commission reported that discrimination and violence against churches was most common in the provinces of West Java, Banten, Central Java, South Sulawesi and Bengkulu.

  • Egypt persecutions
    Rev Fred Nile issued a statement expressing concern with Egyptian persecutions. He said that on Nov 24, 2010 nearly 5000 security forces with over 45 vehicles cordoned off a church site while building work was occurring. The forces used tear gas, rubber bullets and live ammunition on the workers. Inside the church nearly 200 people were praying. Over 200 were arrested.

  • Baghdad persecution
    The Barnabas Fund reports that an elderly Christian Couple and their daughter were killed in their home on Sunday night 5 Dec. 4 gunmen raided the Baghdad home and repeatedly short them with silenced pistols. The victims, Hikmat and Samira Sammak, had fled their home earlier but had returned briefly to finalise the sale of their home and furniture. Two Christian brothers Saad and Raad Hannah were shot dead in their car workshop in Mosul. The incident followed the assassination of two other Christians by gunmen who burst into their Mosul home. Christians are leaving Mosul and Baghdad in waves. About 500 families are reported to be on the move to the Kurdish region.

  • Baghdad security
    The Vicar of Baghdad, Cannon Andrew White reports that many Christians are continuing to flee Iraq. He now attends church in body armour, using armoured cars and surrounded by Iraqi Military. The church is now surrounded by bomb barricades. ON a recent trip out of Baghdad he was given 120 military personal instead of the normal 35 soldiers that surround him. He says normal Christians do not have such security and so are at risk. Source: Australian Prayer Network Newsletter  Dec 6, 2010.

  • Abortion Prayers
    The Pope has issued an unprecedented request for worldwide prayer against abortion. The call is not limited to Catholics with him asking “leaders of all churches to involve the faithful in their respective parishes, religious communities, associations and movements to engage with his prayer initiative. Mary McClusky, from the Secretariat of Pro-Life Activities in the Catholic Church, says the call is especially important at a time when attacks on the worth of human life seem to be at an all-time high. Source: Australian Prayer Network Newsletter  Dec 6, 2010.

  • Algeria church closures
    Police have issued orders for three Algerian churches to cease activity, bringing to 19 the number of congregations told to shut down during the past year. The church closures come amid a flurry of antagonistic media articles warning of campaigns by Protestants to “Christianize” Algeria. Religious Affairs Minister Bu’Abdallah Ghoulamullah has called on Christian groups in Algeria to re-register according to Algeria’s associations’ law. Source: Australian Prayer Network Newsletter  Dec 6, 2010.

  • Pakistan mobile phones

  • Fundraising manager
    Trans World Radio is seeking a marketing/fundraising manager. TWR reaches across 160 countries and in over 220 languages and dialects. For info contact Garrison Pearse – National Director on 03 8060 6055 or 0417 170 265
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POSTED 27 Dec 2010
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Christian Schools Policy

On May 23-24, 2011 Christian Schools Australia is holding a National Policy Forum in Canberra. This event brings together Christian school people from across the board, including CSA, CEN, AACS, ASA, LEA, ACS and SACS. The CSA has invited participation from the Prime Minister and Opposition Leader, the Minister and Shadow Minister as well as key figures from the Gonski (funding) review, ACARA and AITSL.

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POSTED 27 Dec 2010
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New WA Chaplains

A team of 83 specially trained chaplains will be on stand-by to provide emotional guidance and support to students in public schools following traumatic incidents, Education Minister Liz Constable announced today.

The program forms part of the State Government’s $46million Better Behaviour and Pastoral Care strategy.

For Media release: http://www.mediastatements.wa.gov.au/Pages/Results.aspx?ItemID=134590

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POSTED 4 Dec 2010
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Prostitution Adverts

The West Australian newspaper, which has as part of its code of conduct that it will try not to run advertising that is “likely to cause serious offence to the community or a significant section of the community” recently issued its new advertising rates for 2010-11.

Among the increases in its rates were those for the Personal section which promotes prostitution services. The West has increased its midweek rates from $50.49 to $51.99 per single column centimetre and from $83.93 to $86.43 per single column centimetre in the West Weekend.

The West’s advertising code of conduct includes the following:

In accordance with our belief that the maintenance of high standards of advertising builds character and good business we will, at all times, and to the best of our ability, only publish advertisements which:

  • Do not contain anything which, taking into full account both the nature of the specific readership and generally prevailing community standards, is likely to cause serious offence to the community or a significant section of the community.
  • Do not encourage breaches of Commonwealth law or the law of the relevant State or Territory.
  • Comply with Commonwealth law and the law of the relevant State or Territory.

For 2010-11 West rate card: http://info.thewest.com.au/ratecard/index.php/classifieds/general-classifieds-rates-a-deadlines

For the West’s advertising code of conduct: http://info.thewest.com.au/ratecard/index.php/code-of-conduct

To contact Bob Cronin, The West editor-in-chief: 9482 3799 or bob.cronin@wanews.com.au

West chairman Kerry Stokes’ PA: kate.lewis-fuller@aceequity.com.au

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POSTED 4 Dec 2010
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Pastoral Programs

The Council of Churches of WA is partnering with Royal Perth Hospital to provide Clinical Pastoral Education Programmes over the summer and in Autumn next year. It is both a multicultural and interfaith program. For more details see: http://www.churcheswa.com.au/chaplaincy/cpe/

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POSTED 4 Dec 2010
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Shopping Boycott

Melinda Tankard Reist, who is fighting against the sexualisation of children, together with Collective Shout is calling on ppl doing their Christmas shopping to boycott products, brands, people and companies who she says have been exploitative, degrading and disturbing . These are Roger David, City Beach, Amazon.com, Supre, Lynx, Unilever, Lovable, Calvin Klein and Diesel.

Melinda Tankard Reist reported on Nov 29 that Harvey Norman had removed an objectionable advert following a few hours of tweeter action against the company.

For more on why these companies should be boycotted: http://melindatankardreist.com/2010/11/don%E2%80%99t-give-sexploitation-companies-your-xmas-dollar/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+MelindaTankardReist+%28Melinda+Tankard+Reist%29

For more on Harvey Norman pulling their advert: http://melindatankardreist.com/2010/11/in-which-harvey-norman-was-persuaded-that-ad-combining-santa-lap-dancing-and-family-photos-probably-wasn%E2%80%99t-a-great-idea/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+MelindaTankardReist+%28Melinda+Tankard+Reist%29

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POSTED 4 Dec 2010
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Drug Stats

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare released a report Dec 3, 2010 that showed that around 143,000 alcohol and other drug treatment episodes were provided in Australia in 2008-09. The top drug for people seeking treatment was alcohol followed by cannabis. However, for young people (aged 10-19) cannabis was the main concern. 66% of those seeking treatment for drugs were males.

For press release: http://www.aihw.gov.au/mediacentre/2008/mr20081017.cfm

For report: http://www.aihw.gov.au/publications/index.cfm/title/10590

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POSTED 4 Dec 2010
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Youth Convention

The first ever national youth-led summit was held in Canberra on Nov 26-28. Of the 79 senior young leaders representing 58 Australian youth led organisations. It included 12 youth from Perth and 3 from Hobart. Perth representatives included Victoria Burrows, the national coordinator of the Australian Young Christian Students’ Movement, Annie Schmitz, chairman of the Australian Youth Forum and Yannick Spencer, the WA State Director of Left Right Think-Tank.

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POSTED 4 Dec 2010
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Wallace’s View

‘There is a tendency today to view the private and public as separate, but this is a clear fallacy. A person’s private behaviour is very indicative of how we can expect them to carry themselves and act in public life’, writes ACL managing director Jim Wallace in the latest issue of Viewpoint. For article “A call to courage and integrity in public office and other articles see (2.59MB): http://www.viewpointmagazine.com.au/download/viewpoint_issue4.pdf

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POSTED 4 Dec 2010
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