The Prime Minister must intervene to stop the ACT government’s takeover of a Catholic hospital and assure Christians that their institutions are safe.

The ACT government’s unprecedented decision to take over Calvary Public Hospital sets a dangerous precedent that should worry all Christian organisations.

If the Labor/Green government can walk in and assume control of a Christian hospital, will schools be next? Labor/Green politicians will no doubt claim that their take-over of Calvary Hospital is a special case and does not represent a new anti-Christian policy.

But Christians would be naïve in the extreme to take such assurances at face value. Afterall, who would have imagined just a few years ago that the ACT government would do as it is now doing at Calvary?

The decision to take control of Calvary breaks a 120-year agreement between the Catholic Church and the State, allowing the quality, faith-based healthcare provider to operate. The acquisition of Calvary is a dangerous first step towards the takeover of the Church by the State and sets a worrying precedent.

Christian organisations, which exist to serve the public, need assurances from the PM that their long-term arrangements will not be unilaterally terminated by politicians.

That the decision to seize control of Calvary Hospital came just a month after a government inquiry described the hospital’s anti-abortion stance as “problematic” is of special concern and should not be dismissed as a coincidence.

Freedom of religion and conscience is a bedrock of Australian democracy. Imposing state religion on Christian organisations, even by stealth, is a shocking breach of human rights as well as a sure-fire way to lose the significant contribution such organisations make to areas such as health, education, and welfare.

The United Australia Party calls on the Prime Minister to stop the take-over of Calvary Hospital and to assure Christian organisations that their institutions are safe under this government.