Search Results: professional standards

  • RELIGION

    Rules won't restore the Church

    • Chris McGillion and Damian Grace
    • 23 July 2014
    20 Comments

    It is widely assumed that rules are the solution to transgressions such as those being investigated by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Rules are useful. They can be framed to aid compliance and deter wrongdoing. It is no argument against them to say that people will still offend, but if rules are more legal requirements than the expression of genuine morality, they will have limited effectiveness.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    In defence of judges

    • John Ellison Davies
    • 16 July 2014
    18 Comments

    Judge Garry Neilson is in a spot of bother after comparing incest and paedophilia to homosexuality. He is not the first judge to find himself in this situation and he will not be the last. Judges enjoy a life of privilege and status. In their own courtroom they are feudal masters. But when one of them makes a mistake, the media jumps all over them. Politicians rant. The controversy is always out of proportion to the alleged error. 

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  • RELIGION

    Unheard stories of the sex abuse crisis

    • Frank Brennan
    • 02 June 2014
    11 Comments

    In Unheard Story, Fr Padraig McCarthy rightly highlights shortcomings in legal-political-media processes like the Dublin Archdiocese Commission of Investigation. The future wellbeing of children demands that the spotlight be shone on all equally. But there is no getting away from the fact that in Ireland and Australia, the reported instances of child sexual abuse has been greater in the Catholic Church than in other churches.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Budget points to new sectarianism

    • Michael Mullins
    • 19 May 2014
    6 Comments

    When Tony Abbott reintroduced knights and dames back in March, critics said it was a sign he was 'stuck in the 1950s'. Another characteristic of 1950s Australian society was the sectarianism that bitterly divided the nation along religious lines. There are echoes of this in last Tuesday's Federal Budget announcement that schools will lose the option of appointing non-religious welfare workers under the national school chaplaincy program.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Nightmares and daydreams about women and power

    • Tim Kroenert
    • 10 April 2014
    1 Comment

    Sex addicted woman Joe's story is marked by innumerable sexual encounters with random men. Often it is explicit, and thoroughly unpleasant. It culminates in a pointed statement about societal double standards regarding gender and sex. By contrast, Carol's story about trying to get ahead in a man's world is affirming and uplifting at every turn. Both stories are about women and power, but ultimately Carol's is the more empowering.

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  • RELIGION

    Deeper dysfunction behind the Ellis case

    • Tim Wallace
    • 03 April 2014
    12 Comments

    In 2004, two years into the Sydney Archdiocese's botched handling of a sexual abuse complaint against Fr Aidan Duggan, the executive director of the Church's National Committee for Professional Standards did something extraordinary: he inquired into whether Duggan, prior to joining the Archdiocese in 1974, had form. It is the only evidence of a Church official actively attempting to check Duggan's past — an attempt destined to fail.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Bleeding hearts alone won't save asylum seekers

    • Fatima Measham
    • 28 January 2014
    21 Comments

    Those who campaign for more humane treatment of asylum seekers cannot keep assuming that the elements of the debate that matter to them most are the most persuasive. The hardest thing to accept may be that the socioeconomic anxieties for which immigration serves as proxy, as well as the insecurity and resentment generated by state impotence and political opportunism, do not necessarily make for 'bad' people.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Abbott pays a heavy price to stop the boats

    • Tony Kevin
    • 28 January 2014
    34 Comments

    It is now weeks since any asylum seekers arrived in Australia, and under the Abbott Government there have been no reported deaths at sea involving Australian border protection interception action or failure to act. This is a striking improvement on the high death rate under the Rudd and Gillard governments. Tony Abbott has kept his pre-election promise to stop the boats, but at what huge cost!

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  • RELIGION

    No copping out of abuse blame

    • Frank Brennan
    • 26 November 2013
    32 Comments

    The Catholic Church hierarchy now seems more prepared to admit institutional and personal failures prior to 1996. They are yet to admit the pervasive, closed clericalist culture which infected the Church until at least 1996, but that will come. Let's hope that the Victorian police can also now move forward admitting past mistakes without manufacturing excuses which do not withstand the contemporary spotlight.

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  • RELIGION

    Christian social thinking for Australia

    • Frank Brennan
    • 08 November 2013
    1 Comment

    'Many Catholics wonder how we can maintain our Christian faith at this time in the wake of the sexual abuse crisis and the many judgmental utterances about sexuality and reproduction. The Church that has spoken longest and loudest about sex in all its modalities seems to be one of the social institutions most needing to get its own house in order.' Frank Brennan's address to the Yarra Institute for Religion and Social Policy, 8 November 2013. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Labor's light on the hill

    • Frank Brennan
    • 02 November 2013
    7 Comments

    'There have been innumerable post-mortems and words of advice as to how the party with new structures, election rules, and policies can pick itself up, dust off, and win the next election. Sadly some of those post-mortems have come with more coatings of spite and loathing. It is no part of my role in the public square as a Catholic priest to offer such advice.' Frank Brennan's address to the Bathurst Panthers Club, 2 November 2013.

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  • RELIGION

    Church-state issues and the Royal Commission

    • Frank Brennan
    • 25 October 2013
    2 Comments

    'The Church should not give any appearance of hiding behind the corporate veil. Justice demands that present church leaders agree to satisfy any judgment debt against their predecessors or their deceased predecessors' estates when there is an allegation of past failure to supervise or adequately investigate a sexual predator in the ranks. Any damages should be paid from church assets.' Frank Brennan addresses the Australian Lawyers Alliance Conference, Rydges Lakeside, Canberra, 26 October 2013.

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