Child Rights

Kon Karapanagiotidis: What the Morrison Government means for refugees

Our doors [at the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre] have just opened for the first time since a Morrison Government was elected. Kon Karapanagiotidis Independent Australia I’m hurting just like I imagine you all are right now and I have shed more tears than I could have thought possible over this last weekend. But I feel most devastated for people seeking asylum, who were desperately holding onto the hope that a more compassionate government would be ushered in on Saturday. Still, ... Read More »

Alabama passes bill banning abortion

Alabama has become the latest US state to move to restrict abortions by passing a bill to outlaw the procedure in almost all cases. BBC Supporters say they expect the law to be blocked in court but hope that the appeals process will bring it before the Supreme Court. They want the court, which now has a conservative majority, to overturn the 1973 ruling legalising abortion. Sixteen other states are seeking to impose new restrictions on abortion. Earlier this year ... Read More »

Lisa says she suffered financially for years. Now she’s teaching her kids to be money savvy

Imagine trying to raise three young children, two with major health problems, with no access to money. Emily Stewart ABC That’s what life was like for Lisa* for many years. She didn’t have access to the family’s bank accounts and wasn’t given enough cash to cover the basics for her three young children. “There were days when I couldn’t go shopping, couldn’t get fuel for the car, just simple everyday needs, especially when you’ve got young kids and living semi-rurally ... Read More »

Friday essay: separating the art from the badly behaved artist – a philosopher’s view

When actor Kevin Spacey was accused of attempted sexual assault of a teenage boy, his role in the Ridley Scott film, All the Money in the World, was erased and reshot with Christopher Plummer. Janna Thompson The Conversation When the celebrated Torres Strait Island painter Dennis Nona went to jail for raping a 12-year-old girl, Australian art galleries responded by taking his works off their walls and putting them into storage. R Kelly’s concerts were cancelled and his RCA contract ... Read More »

High Court will decide if Indigenous people without citizenship can be deported

The case will focus on whether an Indigenous person can be considered an “alien” under the Australian Constitution. Brooke Fryer NITV News SBS Lawyers will argue in the High Court of Australia this month that Indigenous people should be exempt from the government’s mandatory deportation powers. Immigration laws changed in 2014 allowing visas to be revoked if a person has been convicted of a crime carrying a jail sentence of a year or longer. Data shows the number of visa ... Read More »

The Essence of Evil: Sex with Children Has Become Big Business in America

“Children are being targeted and sold for sex in America every day.”—John Ryan, National Center for Missing & Exploited Children John W. Whitehead American Herald Tribune Children, young girls—some as young as 9 years old—are being bought and sold for sex in America. The average age for a young woman being sold for sex is now 13 years old. This is America’s dirty little secret. Sex trafficking—especially when it comes to the buying and selling of young girls—has become big ... Read More »

The Secrets Hidden Beneath the Palm Tree: A picture book about deafness

I’ll start with a disclaimer: I love Angeliki Pedersen, author of The Secrets Hidden Beneath the Palm Tree. We attend the same parish, and I think I must have met her the first time we visited here. She’s the kind of person that reaches out to strangers at coffee hour and makes them feel welcome. © Charlotte Riggle As Angeliki and I got to know each other, we learned that we’re more than just members of the same parish. We’re also ... Read More »

Nusrat Jahan Rafi: Burned to death for reporting sexual harassment

Nusrat Jahan Rafi was doused with kerosene and set on fire at her school in Bangladesh. Less than two weeks earlier, she had filed a sexual harassment complaint against her headmaster. By Mir Sabbir BBC Bengali, Dhaka Her courage in speaking out against sexual assault, her death five days after being set alight and everything that happened in-between has gripped Bangladesh and brought attention to the… Nusrat, who was 19, was from Feni, a small town 100 miles (160km) south ... Read More »

New study finds family violence is often poorly understood in faith communities

We learned this month that Prime Minister Scott Morrison has pledged A$10 million in the federal budget for couples counselling and mediation for families impacted by domestic violence. Authors: The Conversation But the proposed policy runs counter to expert advice and evidence, which indicates that encouraging women to stay in relationships with an abuser exposes them to higher risk of harm. The announcement was swiftly condemned by family and domestic violence (FDV) advocates. Commentators have noted that an emphasis on ... Read More »

‘Now your life can start again’: Sharrouf children finally reunited with Sydney grandma

The orphaned children of notorious Islamic State terrorist Khaled Sharrouf have been reunited with their grandma Karen Nettleton. SBS A harrowing five-year journey came to an end when a Sydney grandma was finally reunited with her surviving grandchildren and great-grandchildren – the children of former IS fighter Khaled Sharrouf. ABC’s Four Corners captured the moment Karen Nettleton saw Zaynab, Hoda and Humzeh Sharrouf and her two great-grandchildren for the first time since they were taken by their mother, Tara Nettleton, to… ‘Now ... Read More »

‘I did as I was told’: $1 million lawsuit against Knox for child sex abuse

Greg Dubler was just 10 years old when he was sent to board at Knox, the prestigious private school on Sydney’s upper north shore. Peter FitzSimons and Rick Feneley The Sydney Morning Herald His parents were having marriage troubles and wanted to travel to Europe together to try to work things out. Their three sons, Martin, Robert and Greg, who had been Knox day boys, were sent to board at the school for three months in 1975. Greg was the ... Read More »

Big win for women’s reproductive freedom, but still a long way to go

This week saw a big win for women’s rights in Australia in the High Court. It is an historic step forward in the long journey for reproductive freedom for women in Australia. It’s also a timely reminder of how far we have to go. Adrianne Walters The Age In the 1970s, my nan, as a member of the Women’s Electoral Lobby, pushed for the decriminalisation of abortion. She knew what it felt like to discover a pregnancy and be powerless ... Read More »

South Korea abortion ban ‘unconstitutional’

South Korea’s ban on abortion has been ruled unconstitutional in a historic court decision. BBC The country’s constitutional court ordered that the law must be revised by the end of 2020. Under the 1953 ban, women who procured abortions could be fined and imprisoned, except in cases of rape or risk to their health. South Korea is one of the few developed countries to criminalise abortion. The abortion law was reviewed after a challenge from a female doctor who said ... Read More »

A public register of child sex offenders will do more harm than good

If politicians are looking for a sure fire vote winner then anything that punishes people convicted of sex offences does the trick. Greg Barns The Canberra Times So there is likely to be little resistance to Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton’s budget announcement of $7.8 million to establish a National Public Register of Child Sex Offenders. Dutton is proposing that this register would allow all Australians to see names, aliases and photographs of sex offenders, as well as their date ... Read More »

The Catholic Church is not exempt from the laws of Australia

How much will it take for the Catholic Church to accept, openly, that it is, and always will be, subject to the laws of Australia? The Canberra Times ACT Attorney-General Gordon Ramsey was right to excoriate Catholic Archbishop Christopher Prowse, after the latter, currently head of the Canberra-Goulburn Archdiocese, confirmed his priests would not break the seal of confession to report child abuse. Archbishop Prowse told parishioners the priest hearing the confession would instead encourage the person to report the ... Read More »

Opinion: After Cardinal Pell verdict, Catholic Church must reform

Pope Francis once made George Pell one of the Vatican’s most powerful men. Now, the cardinal is headed to prison for sexual abuse. It is time for the Catholic Church to reform itself, says DW’s Christoph Strack. Cardinal George Pell, the Vatican’s third-highest ranking official who once served as the pope’s finance chief, was sentenced to six years behind bars on Wednesday for child sex abuse. The Australian is the most senior Catholic to ever be convicted of such crimes. Pell’s lawyers ... Read More »