Catholic World News

Australian PM says school chaplains should be religious, not social workers

August 28, 2014

The government of Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott plans to continue restricting a school-chaplaincy program to religious ministers, rather than expanding the program to include social workers.

Abbott argued in favor of the original purpose of the chaplaincy program: to provide pastoral support for students. His government had come under pressure to include social workers, and/or to cut public funding for the chaplaincies.

The Australian government was forced to revamp the chaplaincy program under the terms of a court ruling that bars direct support for religious ministers.

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