Not-for-profit organisations promoting and supporting Australian families could face deregistration if the marriage law is changed, warns the Coalition for Marriage. 

New Zealand-based family organisation, Family First NZ, was served a notice this week by the national Charities Registration Board that it intends to deregister the organisation in September because Family First’s promotion of its views about marriage and the traditional family “cannot be determined to be for the public benefit in a way previously accepted as charitable.

“The reasons given by the Board for Family First’s deregistration are a clear demonstration of the consequences of redefining marriage. The Board itself has confirmed that advocating for strong, stable, mum and dad families is no longer acceptable as being in the public interest”, Coalition for Marriage spokesman Lyle Shelton said.

The notice from the Charities Registration Board is the culmination of a four-year saga, in which an initial deregistration of Family First was halted by the High Court, who asked the Charities Board to reconsider.

“It is disappointing that an organisation that understands the need for strong families and is countering the damaging impact on the community of family breakdown could now be penalised for believing in traditional marriage,” Mr Shelton said.

“What is occurring in New Zealand gives Australian charitable organisations a glimpse into what may happen in Australia should marriage be redefined in law.

“As we see in New Zealand and other countries where same-sex marriage has been introduced, it does not take long before it impacts on freedom of speech and religion,” Mr Shelton said.