Tasmanian Times

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

Media Release

Advocates slam Parliament as faith schools bias laws stall

Equality advocates are frustrated that laws preventing discrimination in faith-based schools have stalled in Parliament despite cross-party support for the reform.

 

Just.equal spokesperson, Rodney Croome, said,

 

“The rights of LGBTI students and teachers in faith-based schools should not be used as a political football.”

“Australians were recently appalled to learn that publicly funded faith-based schools have special exemptions from the law allowing them to expel LGBTI students and sack LGBTI teachers, and they want this to stop immediately.”

 

“Federal politicians should stop squabbling and look to Tasmania where LGBTI students and teachers in faith-based schools have been protected from discrimination for twenty years, without the sky falling in.”

 

Today, the Government blocked debate on a Labor bill that would have prevented LGBTI students at religious schools from being discriminated against.

 

There is broad support in Parliament for removing existing laws allowing LGBTI students to be discriminated against by faith-based schools. The dispute is over if and how to protect the “ethos” of those schools.

 

Legislation is now not expected to pass until next year.

 

Just.equal and other human rights groups have called for teachers to be protected from discrimination as well.

In April this year, national polling commissioned by just.equal and conducted by YouGov Galaxy found that

 

  • 82% of Australians oppose the current law allowing LGBTI students to be expelled from faith schools.
  • 79% say teachers should not be discriminated against by faith-based schools for being LGBTI.
  • 78% say religious schools should not be entitled to tax-payer funding if they legally discriminate against gay, lesbian and transgender teachers and students.
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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Christopher Eastman-Nagle

    December 4, 2018 at 9:29 pm

    As it happens, religious schools are funded by a number of stakeholders, including religious communities, parents, alumni and government. The government is just one of them.

    If for instance the school is an Islamic one, the religious community sets it up so that their religious values are perpetuated in their children, while they also get the necessary secular education to eventually acquire gainful employment in a modern economy. And as far as the government is concerned, as long as they meet secular academic standards, that should be that.

    The Islamic community, both here and anywhere else on the planet do not ‘do’ sexual off messaging. They also have very definite ideas on the relationships of men and women which we do not have to agree with.

    If one happens to be a Waleed Aly style Muslim, which I have to point out is a very rapidly shrinking demographic in the Islamic world, I do not have to send my daughter to a Muslim school. Or I could set up an alternative western liberal Islamic school, if there were enough takers.

    That is the underlying major reason for setting up private education. It is horses for courses. Those schools are set up to reflect the values of those who set them up. And what they do is entirely up to the school and its parent/religious community. And if one doesn’t like it, don’t send the children there.

    For most Muslims, the word of the prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) is not up for negotiation, particularly with infidels whose indulgent de-regulatory and privatisation strut upon the stage of history is likely to be as brief as it is discreditable in the eyes of true believers.

    Trying to force such communities to adopt the latest fashion in secular values assumes an enduring libertarian humanist ascendency. That is a wildly optimistic assumption that is already starting to crumble; a fact not lost on the Islamic community.

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