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Minister Steve Kamper (back row, centre) with students of St Patrick’s Mortlake (The Catholic Weekly/George Al-Akiki)

The New South Wales Government is ramping up assistance to ensure people feel safe and secure at their places of worship. Source: The Catholic Weekly. 

Multiculturalism Minister Steve Kamper attended St Patrick’s Catholic Church in Mortlake on May 30 to deliver funds for new security systems as part of a statewide $5 million commitment to improve safety and security for religious practice.

Mr Kamper took time with parish priest Fr Thomas Stevens to discuss the grant and the positive impact the vibrant parish has on the Mortlake community. He also visited children from the neighbouring St Patrick’s Primary School.

Funds from the program will allow St Patrick’s and other places where faith communities gather the chance to update and install new security and surveillance systems.

More than 103 organisations will receive a share of the $5 million as part of the NSW Government’s pledge to deliver $15 million to faith communities over four years.

“As a community parish, these grants are important because the reality is we don’t always have the funding to provide the services that a thriving church like Mortlake needs,” Fr Thomas said.

Mr Kamper added the government had consulted both Multicultural NSW’s Community Resilience and Response Plan Committee and various religious groups across the state.

There has been an ongoing concern of violence being carried out against religious communities after a faith leader was attacked at Wakeley in April this year.

At the time, Sydney Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP denounced the violence declaring people of all backgrounds have a right to profess their faith peacefully.

“Every person in this country, be they bishop or priest, rabbi or imam, minister or congregant, should be able to worship in safety, without fear that they might be subject to acts of violence while gathering in prayer,” Archbishop Fisher said.


Government steps up security so people can pray in peace (By George Al-Akiki, The Catholic Weekly)