Fiona Patten

Fiona PattenFiona Patten is the Convenor and founder of the Australian Sex Party and CEO of Australia’s national adult industry association, the Eros Association. She has had 20 years experience in advocating and lobbying for the rights of adult retailers, sex workers, HIV/AIDS groups and online businesses.

In 2000 she published a listing of all paedophile priests in Australia under the title of Hypocrites, which became the basis of a Four Corners program and the beginning of a more widespread movement against organized religion and sex crimes.

In 2008, frustrated and deeply disappointed with the increasing wowserism of the major parties, she decided to set up a political party dedicated to civil liberties, personal freedoms and curbing religious influence.

Averaged across all states, the Australian Sex Party outpolled the four religious parties at the last federal election, coming in fourth place in the Senate election. In the last Victorian State election she missed out on an upper house seat by 3,000 votes.

The Sex Party is the first political party in Australia to institute a specific policy platform against the influence of religion in society. Policies include:

· removing the tax exempt status for religious businesses

· Replacing chaplaincy programs with ethics classes

· Introducing a Royal Commission into child sexual abuse in religious institutions

* Derek Guille will be moderating a panel on the intersection of Religion & Politics. The panel will include speakers Dick GrossColleen HartlandMarion Maddox and Fiona Patten.

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