11 February 2011

Salvation Army , Chaplains, child abuse, and bad timing.

There is currently a very important court case being fought in the Australian High Court. Ron Williams is talking the Australian Government to court of it's funding of Chaplains in Australian schools. The website gives the reasons and methods, and it's certainly a cause worth fighting for.
 Today the Queensland Govt decided to intervene on the Federal Govt side, not really surprising, as they are getting free money for schools. Although the timing of the announcement cold have been better. I do like this comment :-

 Minister for Education and Training Geoff Wilson said the constitutional challenge threatened the good work of school chaplains.
“Chaplains have been working positively with students in our State schools for two decades,” Mr Wilson said.
“School chaplains are the Salvos of the school yard. Just like the Salvation Army representatives who work in the wider community, school chaplains provide a vital and valuable service within our schools.
“Chaplains are a friend to those in need, and touch the lives of thousands of students every year.

He is referring to the Salvation army, who in the last few years have seem to have become increasingly evangelical. They have always had a good name in Australia, as they do a lot of good work, until the recent child abuse claimaints came forward.
This press release was also released the same day as the one above:-
An advocacy group for former child wards is urging the nation's churches and charities to sell assets to fund compensation for children who were abused in their care.
The call comes on a day where the Salvation Army will formally apologise to those people who were abused in its care.
More than 500,000 Australians were raised in institutions over the past century.
The Salvation Army was responsible for around 30,000.

So Geoff Wilson has just said that the wonderful chaplains are just as good as another Christian group who are guilty of  the abuse of children in their care. The Salvation Army finally said sorry last year, I'm sure there are more stories out there, about what really happened in these awful places.

It is just part of an extraordinary story of how migrant children where abused in Church run institutions in Australia

 The Salvation Army is also known for it's anti - gay stance.

"Perhaps we cannot prevent this world from being a world in which children are tortured. But we can reduce the number of tortured children." -- Albert Camus

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