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Union fears for worker’s safety delivering materials for Australian gay marriage vote

Joseph McCormick August 21, 2017

The postal workers’ union in Australia has said it fears for the safety of workers amid a possible public vote on same-sex marriage.

As both sides ramp up efforts to deliver campaign materials to homes in Australia by post, the union said it fears for its workers’ safety delivering such materials.

The Yes campaign said to Australia Post that it must abide by its rules to not deliver anything that “does not meet current community standards of reasonableness, honesty and decency” nor anything considered “defamatory or offensive”.

Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull
Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull

The Communications, Electrical and Plumbing Union (CEPU) wrote to Australia Post to remind it of its duty.

“We are seeking clarification of Australia Post’s plans, if any, to mitigate against a heightened risk to employee welfare while undertaking duties associated with this extraordinary process,” CEPU’s Greg Rayner said according to the publication.

The No campaign said it had been blocked from online platforms so was using post as its primary way of reaching Australian people.

A church in Australia last week said it will sack teachers and nurses, and other employees, if they get married to their same-sex partner.

The pre-emptive move by the Catholic Church in Australia comes ahead of a public vote on same-sex marriage.

Archbishop of Melbourne, Denis Hart, told Fairfax Media that employees of the church need to uphold its teachings “totally”.

He added that every single one of the 180,000 employees of the Church, if they breach the order, will be treated “very seriously”.

“I would be very emphatic that our schools, our parishes exist to teach a Catholic view of marriage,” he said.

RELATED: Australian MP: If gays can get married, why can’t I marry the Eiffel Tower?

“Any words or actions which work contrary to that would be viewed very seriously.

“Our teachers, our parish employees are expected totally to uphold the Catholic faith and what we believe about marriage. People have to see in words and in example that our teaching of marriage is underlined.

“We shouldn’t be slipping on that,” said Archbishop Hart, who also chairs the powerful Australian Catholic Bishops Conference. He said individual hiring and firing decisions “are best dealt with on the local scene”.

The bishop was backed up by Archbishop Timothy Costelloe, the chair of the Bishops Commission for Catholic Education.

Archbishop Costelloe warned that teachers must not “undermine” their schools’ “values” if same-sex marriage is legalised.

“In accepting a role in a Catholic school, staff will recognise their responsibility to conduct themselves in such a way as not to undermine the fundamental ethos of the school,” he told Fairfax Media.

Right-wing Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull refuses to permit a free Parliamentary vote on equal marriage, while pro-LGBT opposition parties ensured the defeat of plans to put proposals to a public vote.

Turnbull in March reaffirmed his opposition to passing same-sex marriage without a public vote beforehand, despite the pleas of Australian business leaders.

He was last year banned from attending Sydney Mardi Gras because of his politics surrounding marriage equality.

And he caused controversy when he urged people not to condemn anti-gay tennis star Margaret Court for her views, and instead celebrate her tennis achievements.

An anti-gay marriage campaign is spreading outrageous lies in Australia, claiming that Pride events will become mandatory and kids will be taught how to have gay sex.

More: Australia, malcolm turnbull

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