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Senator Michaelia Cash speaks at the Faith in our Future event in Sydney, May 6 (Facebook/Senator Michaelia Cash)

Pressure is mounting on Prime Minister Anthony Albanese over religious discrimination laws with parents and teachers declaring the proposed changes an attack on faith-based schools. Source: The Catholic Weekly.

More than 650 school leaders, staff, parents and students attended the Faith in Our Future event held at Regents Park Christian School on May 6, following an 800-strong attendance in Brisbane the previous week.

Shadow attorney-general Senator Michaelia Cash, shadow education minister Senator Sarah Henderson and Berowra MP Julian Leeser attended the Sydney meeting, but Education Minister Jason Clare and political representatives from other parties declined invitations to attend.

Large numbers are expected at rallies planned for Perth, Launceston and Melbourne.

The events are organised by the Australian Association of Christian Schools, Associated Christian Schools and Christian Schools Australia in response to the Australian Law Reform Commission report tabled in Parliament by Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus in March.

Its key recommendation that the government repeal an important exemption for religious schools in the Sex Discrimination Act would restrict the ability of schools to preference the employment of staff who hold the same beliefs.

National Catholic Education Commission director Jacinta Collins has previously said of the report that it is an attack on religious freedom and parental rights, and would place severe restrictions on schools’ ability to operate as faith-based schools.

Mr Albanese has told faith leaders he wants bipartisan support for two as-yet unreleased draft pieces of religious freedom legislation.

But Senator Cash said the draft bills, which she has seen, reflect the recommendations made by the commission and form part of a larger attack on religious schools across a number of different legislative fronts.

“Faith in this country is under attack, it is as simple as that, and when we are under attack we must stand up and be counted,” she said.

More than 8000 people have sent messages to Mr Albanese or their local member of parliament through a grassroots campaign at the website


Fighting for our faith-based schools (By Marilyn Rodrigues, The Catholic Weekly)