THE TRUTH ABOUT FAMILY FIRST

Submitted by Editor on Sat, 25/09/2004 - 17:51

MEDIA RELEASE: THE TRUTH ABOUT FAMILY FIRST - SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT -

Dear News Editor,

In recent days, as media recognise that all major parties except the Greens have preferenced Family First highly and there are strong chances of Family First gaining Senate seats, there has been much speculation about where the party has come from.

We provide these facts and trust that any comment on the areas below will be based on the information below and not on misinformation that The Greens, a 'network of talkback callers' and other sources have tried to spread.

We welcome your enquiries if you want to clarify any of the points below.

Thank you

Dr Matt Burnet
Federal Secretary

Kens Comment: Although Altnews is 'bi-partisan' this doesn't stop us from having an opinion about the issues we publish and conveying those issues to those involved. I did write to a couple of the Greens senators a couple of months ago asking where their Family Policy was and the only response I got was a couple of press releases pointing vaguely at family issues. The recent creation of a 'Greens Womens Department' is, in my book, political suicide and will only add fuel to the gender war raging across the western world at present.

Any right thinking person will vote for the party with home and family issues. These are far more important to a population than trade or off shore wars. Families, especally children, have been ignored by both past or present governments who have turned family problems into an 'industry' capable only of lowering the unemployment figures.

We need a new government .... ours, not globalisation or US boot lickers

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
Cherrie Newsham
cherrien@familyfirst.org.au
September 25, 2004
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RELIGIOUS AFFILIATION

The party is not a church party or an Assembly of God party, nor is it funded by AOG churches. It does see itself as SOCIALLY CONSERVATIVE, with Family Values based on Christian ethics. Like any main-stream party we do not have on record the religious affiliations of any of our members. The Board of Reference in South Australia includes business-people, members of the medical profession, as well as ministers and people from Catholic, Baptist, Lutheran, Uniting and other church groups. The rapid national growth of the party leading into this election and the late decision to contest in all seats possible, has meant that in some states there are candidates, with strong family values, who have been introduced to the party through the personal relationships they have from their involvement in community/church networks.

LEFT OR RIGHT

The party does not see itself as far right or extreme in any way. Evidence of this is how Family First negotiates and votes with Labor, Liberal and Democrats in the South Australian parliament. It’s voting record for 2 ½ years has been sensible, compassionate, moderate and non-partisan. Hansard attests to our position in the political spectrum.

MAJOR ACHIEVEMENTS SO FAR IN SA PARLIAMENT

* Major child abuse legislation introduced by Family First and passed unanimously in both houses of parliament - resulting in hundreds of investigations by police;

* Inquiry into status of fathers - fathers in crises due to breakdown of family relationships. Again endorsed overwhelmingly by the parliament;

* Opposed introduction of GM products;

* Supported River Murray reform, and

* Championed rights of disabled groups including autistic children

FINANCES

The overwhelming majority of donations have been raised through candidate fundraising events, like the recent one in Brisbane with 400 people present, and personal donations from individuals like any other political party.

STRUCTURE

The Family First Party has been set up under a company structure simply due to the convenience it provided in the short-term for a national structure that spans state boundaries. It should be noted that the transparency of a company is no less than that of an incorporated body. It also needs to be noted that Family First will be incorporated in each state in the next 18 months.

POLITICAL ADVICE

There are no political 'heavyweights' from any other party assisting or advising with the campaign in a public or private way. All preference negotiations have been conducted by the Family First executive and its candidates/workers.

PARTY FORMATION & PLATFORM

Andrew Evans, a retired Assembly of God pastor from the Paradise Community Church, was the first elected Member of Parliament for the Family First Party. He was born in India, and spent many years in PNG. His work involved, among other things, running a primary school and setting up aid posts and prenatal clinics in the Sepik district. He then came to Adelaide and spent 30 years working with the community in his role as a pastor and community leader. This was acknowledged and recognised in 2003 by being awarded an OAM. He founded the party with other people who were interested in seeing him fight in parliament for families on issues such as child abuse, youth suicide, excessive gambling and other social issues. The party has not raised any bill against Abortion in the SA parliament, does not have corporal punishment as part of its policy platform and believes that all co-dependents should not be discriminated against - whether Homosexual or not. In the first election that Family First contested in SA in 2002, Family First defeated the Greens and gained up to 7% of the vote in lower house seats and 4% of the primary vote in the Senate.

Contact:
Peter Harris
Federal Party Chairman
0412 282 705

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