Telstra retreats from same-sex marriage support campaign

Letter last May

Telstra has retreated from a public campaign pushing for same-sex marriage after the Church wrote to companies expressing its concern at those involved in the campaign, reports The Australian.

“The Government has committed to putting same-sex marriage before the Australian people in a plebiscite and, ulti­mately, it will be parliament who determines any changes to the institution of marriage,” a spokesman for Telstra told The Australian yesterday.

“In view of this, Telstra has no further plans to figure prominently in the wider public debate."

Telstra has the contracts for Catholic schools across the country and The Australian spoke with one person familiar with the company’s decision to back away from public support, who said the company “did not want to risk its commercial relationship with the Church.”

In May last year, Archdiocese of Sydney business manager Michael Digges wrote to corporations whose logos were featured with their permission on a full-page Australian Marriage Equality advertisement, implying it would withdraw its custom.

“You may be aware that the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney is a significant user of goods and services from many corpor­ations, both local and inter­national,” Mr Digges wrote in the letter. “Undoubtedly, many of the Catholic population of Sydney would be your employees, customers, partners and suppliers. It is therefore with grave concern that I write to you about the Marriage Equality for Australians campaign.”

The Archdiocese of Sydney did not respond to a ­request for comment.

ARCHDIOCESE STATEMENT

Church clear on same-sex marriage

FULL COVERAGE

Catholic Church forces Telstra into same-sex marriage ad flip (Australian)

Companies challenged on same-sex marriage support (CathNews)

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