Blog Archives

Official Policies of the Secular Party of Australia

Foreign policy

International Law

The Secular Party recognises that civilisation is sustained by the rule of law. Globally, we support the enhancement of the International Criminal Court as a means of dealing with problems, rather than arbitrary superpower intervention. We support the development of international corporate law as a means of addressing adverse transnational corporate behaviour.

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Republic

The Secular Party recognises that monarchies embody the concept of hereditary privilege, and that this is incompatible with the principle of equal human rights. The British monarch is also head of the Church of England. Having the monarch as the Australian Head of State is thus a violation of the basic secular principle of separation of church and state.

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Law and Justice

Incarceration

The Secular Party recognises the need for incarceration to prevent harm, to foster reform and as a deterrent. Revenge should not be a motivation in punishment. The Secular Party advocates policies that stress rehabilitation, crime prevention and harm minimisation.

One law for all

The rule of law is best upheld and universal human rights are best protected by having laws that apply equally to all citizens,

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Prayers, Pledges and Labels

Oaths and prayers

Oaths sworn in association with a chosen religious book have legal standing in Australia. Prayers to a particular deity are used to open parliaments and religious references are made on other ceremonial occasions. The veracity of such oaths and the solemnity of such occasions are not enhanced by such references.

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Immigration and Population

We support continuation of an immigration program that is both economically beneficial and environmentally sustainable, and which provides sufficient allowance for sustainable humanitarian obligations. The Secular Party deplores xenophobic attempts to demonise asylum seekers. We support review of any system that gives special priority to those asylum seekers who manage to reach Australia.

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Welfare

The Secular Party recognises that those who have become marginalised in society, such as drug users, criminals and the mentally ill, need support and fair treatment. Our view is that unwarranted cuts to services, that push responsibilities back to carers or others, merely create further problems. Our policy is to provide incentives for individuals and companies to support individuals in need.

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Taxation

Tax exemptions for religion

Religious institutions receive significant advantages in terms of tax exemptions and benefits. At the same time these institutions are largely unaccountable for their receipt and distribution of funds. The policy of the Secular Party is to end these religious tax exemptions and subsidies. This will benefit the average taxpayer and a level playing field will be provided for all charities.

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Economics

The Secular Party stands for the use of balanced judgement in economics, rather than any ideology. We recognise the general need for balanced budgets, but do not accept free market fundamentalism. In cases of market failure, government intervention is required. We recognise that Australia’s role as a major resource exporter is a significant factor in determining Australia’s economic future.

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Health and Drugs

Health funding

The Secular Party recognises the need for health services to be accessible and affordable for all citizens, including dental care and prescription medicines. We recognise that multiple funding streams, together with the burden of oversight means that private health insurance, and particularly public subsidies for private health care,

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Environment and climate change

We recognise global warming as a significant and dire threat to global civilisation. To address the problem, global carbon dioxide emissions must be reduced dramatically. The required global emission reductions are equivalent to the global cessation of emissions from coal-fired electricity generation. Paying polluters to mitigate pollution is a perverse strategy,

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