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Press Conference: Remarks on the Sexual Orientation Regulations and Supercasino Proposals

Tuesday 30th January 2007

During a press conference today at Lambeth Palace the Archbishop gave the following answers to supplementary questions:

Sexual Orientation Regulations

In response to a question on the UK Government announcement on the implementation of Sexual Orientation Regulations:

"I'll wait to see I think what the period of negotiation that lies ahead will bring, to see whether the concerns of the Catholic Church has raised are going to be addressed. But what we'd most want to do is to disentangle two things. There's a particular issue on which the Catholic Church has taken a stand, as other Christians have; and there's a general issue about the rights of the state and the rights of conscience especially in voluntary bodies. Now that second question is one that, I think, is by no means restricted to this issue. And I think it's not going to go away, so I would like to see some more serious debate now about that particular question - what are the limits, if there are limits, to the State's power to control and determine the actions of voluntary bodies within it, in pursuit of what are quite proper goals of non-discrimination. So I hope there'll be a debate about that."


In response to a question asking about the announcement of a super Casino for Manchester:

"It's quite clear from all the research figures that gambling is a more and more popular form of addiction in this country; and we must not underrate the seriousness of that."

"All addictions are imprisonments for the soul and therefore any form of addiction is something that ought to be of concern to the population at large and to the religious population in particular."

"It seems to me that any large, high profile development is going to attract attention and draw people in here. I know that the area of Manchester where this development is planned to take place, in Beswick, is one which has a long history of deprivation which is going through regeneration at the moment. I happen to have quite direct contact with one of the primary schools there, so it's not quite an academic interest."

"I'm concerned about the messages that are being sent out; about the messages that are being sent out about gambling and children which will need to be controlled very, very vigorously; the attraction of gambling to children and young people."

"I'm concerned that although, indeed, this development has been greeted in Manchester as a contribution to regeneration, ... we can't think of better ways of regenerating deprived areas than by developing within them institutions which may well contribute to the material and spiritual deprivation of the area in the long term."

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