In 2015, the Defence Census showed that the majority of Australia's serving Army personnel -- 53% -- identified as not having a religion. Despite recent moves by the Navy to introduce secular chaplains to better meet the needs of its personnel, the Army continues to privilege organised religion by only providing religious chaplains.
Some current soldiers are calling for the Australian Defence Force (ADF) to become a secular institution. According to Colonel Phillip Hoglin, the ADF is an “overtly Christian” organisation that needs to adjust to the demographic changes in its ranks and in the broader community to be more inclusive of people of no religion and of minority faiths.
Also, many veterans say they are feeling alienated by the overly religious nature of commemoration ceremonies, such as those held on Anzac Day.
And we agree! It's well overdue for Australia to have a #SecularMilitary that is inclusive and serves us all.
At the National Secular Lobby, we're pleased to have joined forces with a number of pro-secular community organisations in the #DontDivideUs campaign against the proposed Religious Discrimination Bill. Add your voice to the campaign.