News in 5: Ad mum's "false" claim; Princes remember Diana; Derryn Hinch citizenship.

1. Mum’s claim in anti-marriage equality ad labelled “false” by son’s school principal.

Cella White said her son was "told he could wear a dress to school" in an anti-marriage equality advertisement. Image via social.

A mother's claim that her son was told he could wear a dress to school, as aired in an anti-same sex marriage advertisement, is false, a Melbourne principal says.

Cella White, whose son goes to Frankston High School, appears in the Coalition for Marriage's television commercial saying "the school told my son he could wear a dress next year if he felt like it".

But school principal John Albiston said the offer was never made."She said it happened in a science class so we spoke to her son's science teachers. They said it never happened," the principal told AAP on Wednesday.


"I think it's very disappointing that she didn't meet with me to explore her concerns. If we had investigated it with her, she would have realised it wasn't happening."

Meanwhile, same-sex marriage advocates have launched a television campaign to hit back at the "dishonest" ads warning gay marriage could impact what children are taught in schools. The Equality Campaign is fighting back with a commercial featuring prominent doctor Kerryn Phelps.

"Sadly, some are trying to mislead us like this ad does, by saying there will be a negative impact, including on young people," Dr Phelps says in the ad, set to hit television screens this week.

"The only young people affected by marriage equality are young gay people who for the first time will have the same dignity as everyone else in our country and they deserve that."

2. Prince William and Harry pay tribute to their mother for 20th anniversary of Diana's death.


Princes William and Harry have paid a quiet tribute to their mother Princess Diana, a day before the 20th anniversary of her death.

Diana's two sons on Wednesday met representatives of the charities she supported in a public garden at Kensington Palace, their home and where their mother lived until she was killed in a car crash in Paris on August 31, 1997.

Sheltering under umbrellas, William, Harry and Kate took a tour of the renamed White Garden, which has been transformed temporarily with white English roses and forget-me-nots planted earlier this year.

The palace's head gardener and a gardener who knew Diana from her frequent visits to the spot, usually known as the Sunken Garden, explained the design and pointed out some of the princess's favourite plants.

3. New Australian test may help parents identify serious pregnancy complications.

New screening to test for serious pregnancy complications. Image via Getty.

A new, more comprehensive, screening test could help parents identify serious pregnancy complications including miscarriage and foetal death.

Though pregnant women can already access a non-invasive prenatal test (NIPT) to screen for chromosomal conditions such as Down Syndrome, the NIPT only scans between three and five chromosomes (out of a possible 24) to test for more common abnormalities.

Researchers from the Murdoch Children's Research Institute in Victoria, as well as Illumina’s Northern California Services Laboratory, expanded this test to examine all 24 chromosomes. They found missing or extra copies of these chromosomes - though rare - also resulted in serious pregnancy complications such as miscarriage, foetal growth restriction and spontaneous foetal death.


“This may help doctors in monitoring pregnancies at increased risk for complications such as foetal growth restriction and may also provide a reason for why some pregnancies have miscarried,” the paper’s lead researcher Dr Mark Pertile said in a press statement.

The new study published in Science Translational Medicine looked at nearly 90,000 pregnancies in Australia and the US.

4. More citizenship upset as Senator Derryn Hinch's eligibility questioned.


Crossbencher Derryn Hinch is reportedly considering referring himself to the High Court over links to the United States that could disqualify him from the Senate.

Senator Hinch told the Herald Sun he still held a social security card from when he lived in the US, making him eligible for a pension. "I plan to raise the issue with the Solicitor-General and, if necessary, will refer myself to the High Court acting as the Court of Disputed Returns," he told the newspaper on Wednesday.

Section 44 of the constitution disqualifies dual-nationals and those "entitled to the rights or privileges of a subject or a citizen of a foreign power", AAP reports.

"I paid a special social security tax for 10 years, on top of regular income tax, which makes me entitled to a pension," Senator Hinch said. "I did write to the US Social Security Department instructing them not to pay that pension because I was now a senator."

Another five members of parliament, including Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce, face a High Court test in October of their eligibility to serve as MPs. As well as this, two MPs, including cabinet minister Fiona Nash, are set to be referred to the court by parliament next week.


5. Police asking for help finding missing mother and son in Queensland.

A mother and her seven-year-old son have been missing from Gold Coast for three weeks.

Police say the 40-year-old woman and the boy were last seen in Coolangatta on August 9, and police believe they may still be in southeast Queensland.

Police hold concerns for their welfare as the woman suffers from a medical condition and are appealing for public help to find them.


According to the Queensland police website, the 40-year-old woman is described as Caucasian in appearance, 175cm tall, black hair with a dyed red fringe.

6. Government urging parents to vaccinate after measles spike in WA.

West Australian parents are being urged to vaccinate their children by the health department after a seriously ill child was hospitalised with measles amid a spike in cases.


There have been four cases that started with an unvaccinated year 10 student from a Perth alternative Steiner school who returned from Italy with measles.

All of the new cases appeared in unvaccinated children who could have had life-long immunity from the contagious and potentially deadly virus, said WA Health's Professor Paul Effler, AAP reports.

"The latest case was particularly concerning, because it resulted in a child being hospitalised for three days," he said.

The affected children are students from the Perth Waldorf School in Bibra Lake and Steiner schools, which are renowned for low immunisation rates among students with parents that oppose vaccinations.

7. Trump goes against his top diplomats to tell North Korea: "Talking is not the answer".


President Donald Trump says "talking is not the answer" when it comes to North Korea. And he's claiming the US has been paying North Koreans what he calls "extortion money" for decades.

"The US has been talking to North Korea, and paying them extortion money, for 25 years," Trump tweeted on Wednesday morning, adding: "Talking is not the answer!"

The tweet comes on the heels of the North's recent missile test over Japan, a close American ally, and seems to be at odds with the actions of Trump's top diplomat, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who's been working in recent weeks to soften the conditions for a possible, formal dialogue with North Korea.

It also goes against the words of Defense Secretary James N. Mattis, who told media "we're never out of diplomatic solutions", the Los Angeles Times reports.

Trump's tweet did not spell out what he meant by "extortion" in the current stand-off over North Korea's nuclear program, and the White House did not immediately respond to questions.

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