This election we have eagerly been awaiting yet more socially regressive policies from the major parties. This one however had slipped under the radar until the folk at Same same drew our attention to it.
Tony Abbott’s Coalition isn’t just against giving same-sex couples the right to marry, they’re also promising they’ll give heterosexual marriages a helping hand to the tune of a $200 voucher each.
On the Australian Christian Lobby’s Australia Votes guide to the election, the Liberal National Coalition was asked: “What will your party do to encourage marriage and resilience in couple relationships?”
Here’s the surprising response: “The Coalition will provide a $200 voucher to all couples when they register their intention to marry, which will be redeemable on an approved marriage education, counselling or parenting skills service.
“Couples can use this voucher before or after their wedding to choose the service that best suits their needs, be it one which assists in developing communication skills, conflict resolution, financial management, parenting skills, or for counselling services if problems arise in a marriage.”
“The Coalition will provide a $200 voucher to all couples when they register their intention to marry.”
While the Coalition’s refusal to support marriage equality leaves same-sex families with kids out in the cold, they add: “The Coalition, if elected, will place a greater emphasis on prevention and early intervention as a means of ameliorating the negative consequences of poverty, family dysfunction and social exclusion.”
They also reiterated their stance on marriage: “The Coalition policy supports the current definition of marriage contained in the Marriage Act.”
“Any change to the policy would be a matter for the Party Room in the future, as is the case with all policies,” their response added, concluding: “Tony Abbott supports the existing definition of marriage.”
The Australian Labor Party’s policy on the increasingly uncontroversial issue is also well known, and reiterated on the ACL’s website:
“The Rudd Labor Government believes that all people are entitled to respect, dignity and the opportunity to participate fully in society regardless of their sexuality.
“When the issue of same sex marriage has previously been considered by Parliament, Federal Labor has allowed each MP and Senator a conscience vote according to their own personal views.
“This reflects the fact that people of good will can hold different positions on this fundamental matter.”
Same Same has sought confirmation from the Liberal Party on their marriage voucher policy, and will update this story if/when we hear back.
This policy, as well as being highly discriminatory towards not only same sex couples but also to hundreds of thousands of men and women in de facto relationships, many of which are of long standing and are legally recognised to all intents and purposes as equivalent to marriage, assumes that these “marriage preparation” courses actually deliver the goods in terms of preserving relationships and lowering the rate of divorce.
However no valid objective peer-reviewed data has ever been available to support that notion
Since it is a project of the mad mullahs at the ACL, do atheists and other non-believers, or non-Christians for that matter, have to sign up?
Do celebrants have to hand out the voucher or will it be available from your local Coalition MP’s office?
And is it available for straight couples entering their second, third or subsequent marriages? Some MPs may be personally interested in that.
The Antibogan would probably prefer a new microwave. 😉