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Australian churches call for justice in pre-election campaign

Posted on: June 7, 2016 1:35 PM
Pre election campaign of Angicare Australia
Photo Credit: Anglicare
Related Categories: anglicare, Australia, elections, justice

[ACNS, by Rachel Farmer] The social justice arm of the Anglican Church in Australia has launched a campaign called ‘leave no-one behind’ to promote the cause of the vulnerable in the run-up to the country’s elections on July 2.

Anglicare Australia (the social justice organisation of the country’s Anglican Church) has laid out its priorities for the election campaign to promote affordable and secure housing, secure work, adequate income and tax reform to enable these priorities to be put into action.

Executive Director of Anglicare, Kasey Chambers writing in Anglicare’s newsletter, said: “Anglicare Australia has a mission of enabling and building communities of hope and justice. For these and human life in general to flourish we need housing, income and participation for people. Affordable housing, secure and meaningful participation, and adequate income.”

The organisation has produced an action plan for members and partners on its planned activity and public engagement during the election campaign. It will also work on collaborative campaigns with other agencies, including the Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) and a number of church bodies, on housing,  care for elderly people, youth and family, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, and civil society.

Kasey Chambers said the organisation aimed to encourage people to stand up for others.

“There is a theme that runs through an election for us, that of hearing the voices of those who we serve; of those that use our services being visible in democracy… It is too exhausting to always have to be the Indigenous person who alone reminds a workplace of the importance of including the world’s oldest culture….Too much to ask the survivors of child sexual abuse to campaign alone for redress. These are powerful voices and their stories must educate policy and service response.”

The ‘leave no-one behind’ campaign aims to create opportunities for the voices of the people that use Anglicare’s network's services to be heard during the election, and increase the visibility of people living on the margins. Kasey Chambers said it was important that everyone had a voice in the debates.

“When we sideline the voices of any section of our society the democratic whole is severely diminished,” she said.  “We all lose and we end up with a Facebook-style election where policies and parties seek the most ‘likes’ from the most people; an election based on vested interest and a poorer country for all.”