Friday, 30 May 2014

Poll shows only 5% of Australians want only religious chaplains

The Guardian has published the results of an Essential Poll finding that only 5% of the voting public want only religious chaplains in schools:
Asked which program was most appropriate for the government to fund, only 5% nominated “religious chaplains only”, 17% said secular chaplains only, 37% said both chaplains and social workers and 23% said neither.
The Essential Report breaks down the figures by vote intention, with Greens voters most strongly supporting secular social workers only (41%)
 Which schools program do you think is more appropriate for the Federal Government to fund?
Total

Vote Labor
Vote Lib/Nat
Vote Greens
Vote other
Religious chaplains only
5%
3%
9%
-
6%
Secular social workers only
17%
21%
10%
41%
11%
Both chaplains and social workers
37%
35%
41%
32%
44%
None of the above
23%
23%
22%
21%
23%
Don’t know
18%
17%
18%
6%
15%
AllOut, a campaigning platform that advocates for LGBT issues, has already received 163,976 signatures in support for a petition calling for the government to give students access to qualified mental health professionals or social workers, rather than anti-gay religious groups.

A national study from LaTrobe University found that young people with religious backgrounds were more likely to experience social exclusion, less likely to feel safe at home, and "
received less support from parents, siblings and teachers when they disclosed their sexuality and they were more likely to report self harm and suicidal thoughts." One teenager in the study explained that he became severely depressed because ‘being Christian made me hate myself.’ Over 80% of LGBT young people experienced verbal abuse or physical assault while at school. Former students of private schools have told of "bullying going unpunished, being sent to counsellors who tried to ‘‘fix’’ their sexuality and being told to keep their sexual identity under wraps by their school leaders".

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