Under the Andrews government’s current road map people of faith and places of worship are not being given fair and equitable treatment. Step 3 allows hospitality to open for 50 people outdoors and 20 people indoors while restricting places of worship to 10 people outdoors and individual households indoors.
Just as I have stood by businesses, individuals and families through this crisis, I now proudly stand shoulder-to-shoulder with people of faith in our state.
As of this morning some 10 619 Victorians signed the equality for faith grassroots petition requesting the Premier give equitable treatment for religious communities so they may practice their faith in a COVID-safe manner.
This petition is supported by peak religious organisations, including members of the Victorian Council of Churches, the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia, the Australian Confraternity of Catholic Clergy, the Islamic Council of Victoria, the Hindu Council of Australia, the Presbyterian Church of Victoria and the Brahma Kumaris.
This cause is also supported by 295 church pastors and leaders who wrote to the Premier yesterday, as well as the Catholic bishops of Victoria who sent a similar letter two weeks ago.
People of faith in this state are not asking for special treatment, they are simply asking for equal treatment, and I urge the Premier to favourably consider this respectful request.