Secular Party of Australia

The Secular Party of Australia stands for separation between church and state.

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Federal election 2013

Posted by Secular on February 1, 2013

The Prime Minister has announced that the 2013 federal election will take place on September 14th. The Secular Party intends to contest this election, and we are seeking your support.

How you can help

  • Voting. We need your primary vote, and by word of mouth you can encourage others to support us too.
  • Donations. Elections are extremely expensive, and we need your assistance. This is a fully registered party so most donations tax-deductible. All donations go towards election efforts — we have no paid staffers, and all our people work as volunteers.
  • Volunteering. If you have any time to spare at all, please contact mclarke@secular.org.au.
  • Attend meetings.
  • Participate in our social media, Facebook and Twitter.
  • Join us! Membership is free, and it’s easy to join with our online form.

Why support the Secular Party?

The Secular Party is the first and only political party in Australia that stands for separation of church from state, this being vital for a liberal, secular democracy. The word ‘secular’ means non-religious, and secular government means a government free from religious influences.

Religious institutions enjoy significant financial privileges through taxation exemptions and government grants. Naturally, this loss has to be made up for by the taxpayer elsewhere. Even the commercial enterprises owned by religious organisations are still eligible for tax breaks, to the disadvantage of their competitors.

Meanwhile, religious organisations are exempt from anti-discrimination legislation, and are still free to discriminate against the LGBTQI (e.g. gay/lesbian) community, women, individuals of other faiths and those of no faith. Only recently, the government introduced draft anti-discrimination legislation, but failed to remove the so-called ‘rights’ of the religious to discriminate, even when they are in receipt of government funding. Meanwhile, religious bodies such as the Australian Christian Lobby and the Catholic Church use their influence to block socially progressive legislation such as marriage equality, voluntary euthanasia and stem cell research. When viewed against the background of the Royal Commission into child sexual abuse, many Australians are wondering why this situation continues in the 21st century.

None of the major parties are willing to stand up to the churches.

We are not a one-issue party; please refer to our policies. We are socially progressive and economically progressive. All our policies are based on evidence and reason and, where applicable, scientific consensus. In particular, we have strong policies on climate change, which we consider to be critical.

Background

The Secular Party was incorporated in 2006, and participated in the 2007 federal election by running candidates as Independents. The party was registered in 2010, shortly before the federal election. Although only just registered, we were able to field over 30 candidates across Australia in that election.

Party leadership

There are 11 on the national committee. John Perkins (Victoria) is President. Ian Bryce (New South Wales) is our Vice President. Rosemary Sceats (Victoria) is our Treasurer. Moira Clarke (South Australia) is the Secretary of the association. We also have delegates for New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, Western Australia and South Australia. The AEC lists John August as our Public Officer and John Perkins as the party’s Secretary. We can be contacted by email or phone, and are also available for meetings.

Preferences

Preferences will be determined closer to the election, but supporters can gain an idea of how we will preference by considering our choices for the 2010 election. We put Labor ahead of the Coalition, and the Greens ahead of Labor. Some socially progressive minor parties were placed ahead of the Greens. Parties such as Family First and the DLP were placed last.

We will be very clear concerning our preferences in plenty of time for the election.

Further questions

We can also be contacted on info@secular.org.au.

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