PM to introduce controversial faith discrimination bill today.
The federal government wants to give religious Australians "confidence to be themselves" and ensure they are not "persecuted" for expressing their beliefs.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison is set to personally introduce into federal parliament on Thursday the contentious bill he promised in the lead-up to the 2019 federal election.
"The bill ensures that people can't be persecuted for moderately expressing a reasonable opinion," Attorney-General Michaelia Cash told Vision Christian Radio's 20Twenty program.
"Now, that opinion, you and I may not agree with. As long as it is a statement of belief made in good faith, that is not discrimination under any Australian anti-discrimination law. That is very, very important."
Labor leader Anthony Albanese endorsed the goal of shielding people of faith from discrimination in a sign the government bill could pass the House of Representatives next week. | @CroweDM #Auspol #religiousfreedom https://t.co/hrKaGkQto3— The Age (@theage) November 24, 2021
Interviewer and minister Neil Johnson put to the attorney-general comments about Jesus referring to marriage as between a man and woman would be protected.
"But if you do that with some level of malicious intent, you may overstep the mark," he said.
Senator Cash replied: "That's a beautiful way of explaining it, that's exactly right."
Equality Australia was concerned the bill would take away existing anti-discrimination protections including on the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity.
Labor will seek to refer the bill to a joint select committee, which would enable senators and MPs to examine it, rather than a Senate legislation committee.
In COVID news: positive cases for Byron, SA, the NRL, AFL and Nova studios.
More than 80 backpackers at a Byron Bay hostel on the NSW north coast have been placed into a week-long lockdown after a guest tested positive to COVID-19.
The lockdown comes as thousands of celebrating school leavers prepare to descend on the area over the next month from this weekend.