National News

Australia loses credible climate voice

Coal-fired power plant with snoke. Photo by iStock

The repeal of the carbon tax will reportedly reduce household electricity bills by up to 50c per day, but is the long-term cost worth it? Rohan Salmond reports. Bucking global trends, Australia became the first nation to repeal its carbon price legislation when bills cleared the Senate in July. In a joint media release, Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Minister ...

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High Court challenges model, not chaplains

The 19 June High Court decision that the funding model of the national school chaplaincy program is unconstitutional may not mean what you think it does. Mardi Lumsden explores. The High Court decision to overturn the current funding model for school chaplains is not a criticism of the program itself, said Peter James CEO of Scripture Union (SU) Queensland, Australia’s ...

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Not so free speech

Attorney General George Brandis

The Attorney General George Brandis is refusing to make public any of the 5,557 submissions the Government has received for and against the controversial proposed changes to free speech laws. In what some have described as “about as ironic as it gets”, in a Senate Estimates Committee Senator Brandis refused to even say how many submissions opposed the proposed changes, ...

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Budget challenges most vulnerable

UnitingCare Australia National Director Lin Hatfield Dodds interviewed by the media. Photo taken by UnitingCare.

The 2014 Budget was a major concern for the Uniting Church and its agencies. Mardi Lumsden reports. The federal government’s 2014 Budget was met with frustration and concern by many different parts of the Uniting Church in Australia in May. Uniting Church President Rev Dr Andrew Dutney said the church’s main concern is how Australia’s most vulnerable are affected by ...

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Asylum seeker policy shambles

"A Great nation is a compassionate nation" Martin Luther King

The Age has reported that Indonesian officials reported that two boats of asylum seekers were intercepted by Australian naval or Customs vessels in recent days and their 20 passengers put together onto one wooden vessel and pushed back towards Indonesian waters. The asylum boat’s crew reportedly told Indonesian navy investigators that two Australian warships put three extra people on board ...

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UN finds Coleman v Australia case a violation of human rights

Townsville Queensland view over cdb

In 1998 Patrick Coleman made a speech in Townsville’s pedestrian mall without a permit, in breach of a local government by-law. He was fined and subsequently detained by police for 5 days for non-payment of the fine. The UN Human Rights Committee found that his speech was on subjects of public interest (human rights, land rights and mining) and his ...

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L’Arche’s Eileen Glass on inclusiveness

Eileen Glass, International Vice Leader of L'Arche International.

As part of 50th anniversary celebrations, L’Arche Brisbane hosted a jubilee dinner with guest speaker Eileen Glass—the first Australian International Vice Leader of L’Arche International. Her speech is a fascinating exploration of the challenges and opportunities presented by diversity. The weakest and most frail are not a burden, she says, they enrich our communities. Eileen begins: One of the significant challenges ...

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A sign for Australia

Rev Rronang Garrawurra is Chairperson of the Uniting Aboriginal and Islander Christian Congress (UAICC)

In a historic moment in the Uniting Church journey, First and Second Peoples gathered together in front of Parliament House in Canberra, calling for justice and reconciliation. Matt Pulford reports. On 18 March, on the lawns in front of Parliament House in Canberra, around 300 members of the Uniting Church in Australia gathered for an act of public worship. The ...

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UnitingCare is closing the gap

Map of Australia featuring Aborignal flag

While Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are living 10-17 years less than other Australians UnitingCare Queensland CEO Anne Cross talked about the commitment of the organisation to engage constructively in actions that help “Close the Gap”. On National Close the Gap Day which focuses on the gap in life expectancy education, incarceration rates, family well-being and health between Aboriginal ...

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A Destiny Together prayer vigil

Rev Elenie Poulos, Rev Rronang Garrawurra, Rev Dr Andrew Dutney and Rev Terence Corkin in front of Parliament House, Canberra.

The Destiny Together prayer vigil took place in front of Parliament House in Canberra yesterday and there are some really wonderful photos already coming from the attendees. We’ll be posting these photos and links to some of the statements made at the event as they become available. We’ll also cover the event in the upcoming edition of Journey, which will be available on ...

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