keywords: Anti-Discrimination Laws

  • RELIGION

    Exempting churches from anti-discrimination laws

    • Frank Brennan
    • 07 September 2012
    18 Comments

    Church groups in Australia have vigorously campaigned to protect themselves from particular equal opportunity laws. While there is agreement about a faith community's right to employ practising believers, there is plenty of room for disagreement as to how most prudently and charitably to exercise that right.

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  • RELIGION

    'Equal laws and equal rights ... dealt out to the whole community'. How close 161 years on?

    • Frank Brennan
    • 04 December 2015
    1 Comment

    'Tonight, gathered here in the Southern Cross Club in the national capital, gathered as Eureka's children. We affirm that there is room for everyone under the Southern Cross. I hope you will return to Canberra carrying the Southern Cross flag when we proclaim the Australia Republic on 1 January 2020 which will be two elections after Australia last had a monarchist leader of a major political party. Tony Abbott is the last of his type. Whether the prime minister honoured to witness the proclamation is Malcolm Turnbull, Bill Shorten or another matters not.' Annual Dinner for Eureka's Children, Southern Cross Club, Canberra, 3 December 2015.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Clarifying the anti-discrimination muddle

    • Frank Brennan
    • 19 February 2013
    34 Comments

    There has been some very confused debate about the Government's proposed consolidation of anti-discrimination laws. David Marr claimed leaders of 'conservative faiths' were free to 'kick poofters, lesbians, single mothers, people in de facto relationships'. He needs to take a cold shower while we clarify these issues. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Burying Australia's inhumane refugee laws

    • David Manne
    • 19 May 2008
    5 Comments

    Australia's refugee regime may represent the Western world's worst practice. The Government has abolished flawed and dehumanising temporary protection visas, but a more substantial review is required to ensure asylum seekers enjoy equal protection under Australian law.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Alt-right wolves in sheep's clothing

    • Joshua Badge
    • 27 November 2018
    2 Comments

    Far-right extremists are savvy political actors. They know openly discussing their beliefs risks running afoul of anti-discrimination laws. Because of this, they have mastered how to speak in the negative and convey meaning through allusion.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Religious freedom is not a zero-sum game

    • Joshua Badge
    • 18 October 2018
    12 Comments

    Religious freedoms extend only so far as they do not contradict the fundamental rights and freedoms of others. While all Australians should enjoy religious freedom, they also bear the right to non-discrimination and to the highest attainable standard of health. It is also unclear how positive discrimination is related to practising a religion.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Reform constitution to give a voice to all

    • Kate Galloway
    • 21 November 2017
    2 Comments

    The common thread through all of these stories is the need to have a mature conversation about the ways in which we can afford a meaningful voice to our communities. If human rights are the benchmark, then rights must be afforded to all. It is not right that those with the least power must continue to compromise.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Inside the 'glass closet' of a gay Catholic teacher

    • Alex Ryan
    • 30 August 2017
    54 Comments

    Being both gay and Catholic leads to a somewhat fraught existence. On one hand, we have our Catholic peers who, frequently, have trouble empathising with what it means to be 'intrinsically disordered'. On the other, we have our queer friends who are, understandably, sceptical of our allegiance to an organisation that has a deep history of discrimination towards people like us. This existence is further complicated for those of us who choose to partake in ministry that sees us employed by the Church.

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  • RELIGION

    Citizenship and the Common Good

    • Frank Brennan
    • 30 August 2017
    6 Comments

    'There was one controversy in which Lionel Bowen was involved that does provide good lessons for the contemporary Catholic considering the desirable law or social policy on a contested issue - lessons for the citizen weighing what is for the common good. Back in 1979 there was debate in the Parliament on a motion which was framed to stop Medicare funding of abortions. Bowen, a strict Catholic, was strongly opposed to the motion. He did not think the motion was about abortion. He thought it was about money.' Frank Brennan's 2017 Lionel Bowen Lecture

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  • RELIGION

    Let's amend 18C to say what it means

    • Frank Brennan
    • 14 March 2017
    24 Comments

    The debate over section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act (18C) has gone on for far too long. It's time to bring it to a close. To date, I have been silent in the present debate, in part because I was a critic of such legal provisions when they were first proposed in 1992 and again in 1994. I have since been convinced that a provision like 18C could be designed to target racial vilification, leaving offensive insults beyond the reach of the law in a robust democracy committed to freedom of speech.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Freedom of conscience and same-sex marriage

    • Jack Maxwell
    • 23 January 2017
    25 Comments

    Two issues can be dealt with shortly. First, ministers of religion must be free to solemnise marriages in accordance with their beliefs. Second, there is no basis for extending a similar concession to marriage celebrants. The case of commercial service providers is more complex. Many argue that caterers, florists, reception centres and so on should be free to refuse to participate in same-sex weddings, on the basis of their religious beliefs. The case for the commercial exemption is unconvincing.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Rethinking care work key to closing gender pay gap

    • Kate Galloway
    • 25 November 2016
    2 Comments

    Civil society requires care work. All of us, at various stages of our lives, will be dependent on others for our daily needs. Most of us will likewise care for others at some point. The challenge is how to allocate caring responsibilities throughout society, while allowing also for the paid work that secures economic independence. At the moment the tacit expectation that women will do unpaid care work - and that men (theoretically) are unburdened by care work - contributes to economic inequality.

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