Pelco Spectra PTZ dome camera outside cathedral.

AUSTRALIAN Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced $A55 million in security upgrades for mosques and other places of worship and denounced “mindless tribalism” in society that “fosters hate, blame and contempt”.

Speaking at the Australia-Israel Chamber of Commerce in Melbourne, Morrison said the terrorist attack in New Zealand has accelerated a plan to expand the Government’s Safer Communities Fund, to include religious schools, places of worship and religious assembly.

Australia’s safer community fund makes grants available from $50,000 to $1.5 million to implement security and safety enhancements including CCTV, lighting, fencing, bollards, alarms, security systems and public address systems. Morrison said the new funding would give priority to places of worship.

“I so wish we didn’t need this,” Morrison said. “I believe in religious freedom, and it that has to start with the right to worship and meet safely without fear of violence.” ♦