The Perth Theatre Trust has decided to allow the Australian Christian Lobby to hire its venues for the The Truth Of It tour starring its managing director Martyn Iles, who is known as the “youthful face of the Christian right”.

The trust had earlier barred the Lobby from its venues claiming it was a politically motivated event. Perth Theatre Trust chair Morgan Solomon told WA Today that its venue hiring policies were under review, but since the review was unlikely to be completed before the dates of the event, it was allowing  the Lobby to go ahead with the event at its venues.

“The PTT will revise its venue hire policy to strengthen its position to make decisions for commercial hires in accordance with the PTT’s values,” Solomon told WA Today.

“The primary purpose of Perth Theatre Trust venues is for cultural and artistic expression. Commercial hires are a secondary consideration, however, Perth Theatre Trust decisions will always respect the values of diversity, equality, and inclusion.”

No Truth To It

The Lobby, that has been known to target the LGBTQI+ community and supported homophobes like rugby player Israel Folau, had claimed “discrimination” after the PTT rejected its venue hire request for the publicly-owned Albany Entertainment Centre, on the grounds it was a politically motivated event. 

The ACL had threatened to take the decision to the Equal Opportunity Commission if the trust didn’t reverse its decision.

The Trust had said that event appeared to fall short of a condition that was part of a new venue hire policy document brought in on March 15, 2021, two days after the Western Australia state elections. The Trust said that the Lobby’s event was a politically motivated event and the content didn’t represent the views of the WA government or the majority of its people.

Supporters of the ACL’s position pointed to the fact that the Albany Entertainment Centre hosted politically related events by former and current Labor MPs before the March 13 election, even though the new policy was not adopted by the trust until after that election.

It’s ok, Credlin is on it

Of course, Sky News viewers and fans of Peta Credlin were “hot to trot on this”, with Credlin taking the opportunity to talk to the Managing Director of the ACL and star of the show, Martyn Iles.

Credlin put this question to Iles during her program this week.

“Look, I remember it wasn’t so long ago, that you had Prime Ministers like Rudd and other Labor luminaries who would, you know, crawl over each other to address your national conference and  particularly so in election years because communicating with the Christian lobby supporters was something actively sought by both major parties. What’s happened here, that Labor now wants you silenced, what are the policies that they find so reprehensible?”

Iles responded, “Well in Western Australia, I mean, I think the thing that is recent where we were on the other side of the issue to them was the euthanasia legislation which they recently introduced.”

“Other than that, what would there be, I mean I guess we’re a pro-life organisation, I guess we were on the No side of the Same Sex Marriage campaign, when that was coming through. I mean we hold a number of traditional Christian views on things and my concern of course is that, if that’s the case if because we hold a number of traditional Christian views on things and we have an enormous number of supporters across the country, 220,000 at last count, if they’re going to cancel that then are they saying, that ok, Christians, de facto, are in that category of disagreeing with the government, so Christians are cancelled.”

“I wonder whether they’re a bit high on their own popularity at the moment, they don’t feel like they need anyone and they’ve forgotten about key constituencies.”

In their twitter bio, the Australian Christian Lobby claim they’re a grassroots movement with over 200,000 Australians. Un April, the Lobby had spent big money to take out full page ads urging for Israel Folau’s return to the NRL, which he had to leave one homophobic vides he posted on social media.


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