As summer approaches, Royal Life Saving would like to remind readers to actively supervise young children at all times around water to prevent drowning deaths.
Our data shows that the risk of drowning triples as soon as a child turns one. In the past 17 years, 202 children aged one year have drowned. Almost all of these deaths were due to a lack of active adult supervision, and most incidents occurred in backyard swimming pools. Additional data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows that drowning is the number one cause of death in one-, two- and three-year-old children (ABS 2019). Distractions are dangerous, and the consequences can be tragic. Drowning is often quick and silent - it takes only a few moments for a child to slip away unnoticed, fall into water and drown. Drowning deaths in young children are wholly preventable. Simple safety measures can make all the difference between a fun day and a tragedy.
Help us to eliminate child drowning for once and for all by always keeping watch of children around water, and ensuring that you have a pool fence with a fully operational gate - and never leave that gate propped open. In addition, we urge parents and carers to learn how to resuscitate and teach their children water safety skills from an early age. We want everyone to enjoy the water, while staying safe and always mindful of the risks.
Justin Scarr, Royal Life Saving Society
The Lord's prayer
I can think of a few reasons why the Lord's Prayer should not be a feature of parliament, the most obvious is that Jesus taught his followers not to pray in public, but to pray in private instead. He was pretty clear about in the Gospel of Matthew. It's strange how many Christians ignore this when they defend parliamentary prayers, when this tradition is actually against Christ's teachings.
Secondly, despite the oft repeated claim that Australia is a Christian nation, anyone who believes that clearly hasn't read our constitution, specifically Article 116, which makes it clear there is no officially sanctioned religion in Australia; we are not a theocracy. This may come as a surprise to people who have never read our constitution, but I suggest they read it and stop trying to defend a version of Australia that doesn't exist and never has. If you think Australia is a Christian nation, you don't understand how our nation was founded.
(One of our founding fathers, Alfred Deakin, was a committed spiritualist, into theosophy and other occult interests, he and his wife use to summon up the spirits for advice in his political career, so it's not like our founders had any kind of evangelical Christianity in mind for our nation the like of which is peddled today).
Thirdly, having the Lord's Prayer in parliament implies a Christian supremacy, which is inappropriate in a multi religious and increasingly secular society. It's not the job of the government to place any one religion iup on a pedestal for special treatment. So the Lord's Prayer in parliament is against Christ's teachings, it is against our founding document, and it is against modern multicultural and secular society. That is why it should be removed, in principle,. People still have freedom of religion, people can do what they want on their own time, but the government should not be trying to champion any particular religion.
Daniel Peckham, Tamworth