#1003 for broadcast on 2CH Sydney, 30 Nov 2014.
Christians have found an unlikely ally in Tim Berryman, the Principal of Fitzroy Community School, an independent school in the inner city Melbourne suburb of Fitzroy.
Last week Mr Berryman wrote to his school community calling on parents to stand up for the protection of religious freedom. The Labor Party in Victoria is proposing to change equal opportunity law if elected, making it difficult for Christian schools to employ Christian teachers unless they were specifically teaching religion.
Mr Berryman says he
cannot conceive of running a good school without the ability to choose staff who uphold the school’s ethos, its values and its culture. In many schools, this incorporates a specific set of religious beliefs.
He sees “a sad irony in the current situation, where our intellectuals cry out for those persecuted in foreign lands for their beliefs, but are silent about protecting religious freedom here.”
I’m Rod Benson for the NSW Council of Churches.
This issue will require watching in view of Saturday’s election of Labor in Victoria. Freedom of speech and all expressions of opinion, including that of a school’s or any employer’s ethos, are often at risk. It’s ironical that so-called libertarians threaten such freedoms.