Action needed to stop sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination

Hon Lynn MacLaren MLC, The WA Greens Spokesperson on Sexuality has welcomed the findings of the Australian Human Rights Commission’s Addressing sexual orientation and sex and/or gender identity discrimination consultation report released today. The report found broad support for federal laws protecting people from discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation and sex and/or gender identity.

Lynn MacLaren said “the report shows that discrimination, violence and bullying on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity is alarmingly common in our society. This is completely unacceptable and federal laws are urgently needed to protect against this type of discrimination.”

In 2010 both of the major political parties affirmed their support for the inclusion of protection from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in federal law. The Australian Government also reaffirmed its commitment to implementing this policy in its appearance before the United Nations Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review earlier this year.

“Now the Government needs to move beyond rhetoric and urgently put in place laws to protect the human rights of people of all sexual orientations and gender identities,” added Ms MacLaren.

“Marriage equality would be an important step towards full equality. Equality in marriage rights is about a fair go for everyone,” said Ms McLaren.

Independent polling last year shows that 62 per cent of Australians believe same-sex couples should be allowed to marry.
“I believe that same-sex couples should have the same rights as other couples to celebrate their love and commitment through marriage,” concluded Ms McLaren.