Tasmanian ASC to Endorse Same-Sex Marriage

Applause for TAS Labor Endorsement of same-sex marriage vote sends a “Strong Message ” to Rudd Government commitment to charter of rights also welcomed.

Gay law reform advocates have applauded this morning’s decision by the Tasmanian ALP State Conference to endorse same-sex marriage.

Tasmanian Gay and Lesbian Rights Group spokesperson, Rodney Croome, said the decision increases pressure on delegates at this week’s national conference, where same-sex marriage is also on the table.

“This decision will send a strong message to the up-coming ALP National Conference and the Rudd Government to support equality in marriage for same-sex partners”, Mr Croome said.

“Clearly, the grass roots of the Labor Party has heard the message that a majority of Australians support marriage equality for same-sex couples, even if the Party’s federal leadership is lagging behind.”

According to Mr Croome, Tasmanians should feel proud their state remains a leader on social and legal reform.

“It’s appropriate that the first Australian state to adopt a civil union scheme for same-sex couples is also leading the debate on same-sex marriage”, he said.

“Today’s decision will help dispel the unfair stereotype of Tasmania as socially backward.”

Mr Croome went on to say that opponents of marriage equality like State Conference delegate, Senator Helen Polley, are wrong to claim that a majority of same-sex partners are content with the Rudd Government decision to recognise them as de facto partners but not allow them to marry.

“Repeated surveys in the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community have consistently found that over 80% of same-sex partners want the right to marry.”

A Galaxy Poll released last month found that 60% of Australians and 64% of Labor voters support same-sex marriage. http://www.australianmarriageequality.com/releases/20090616.htm

In 2003 Tasmania established the nation’s first civil union scheme for same-sex couples and the first in the world for everyone in a significant personal relationship. http://www.relationshipstasmania.org.au/

The Tasmanian Gay and Lesbian Rights Group has also welcomed a commitment by the State Government to introduce a State Charter of Rights.

Spokesperson, Rodney Croome, said a Charter of Rights will guarantee what all Tasmanians deserve and expect but don’t always receive, fair and equal treatment.

“A Charter of Rights will help ensure a fair go for all Tasmanians”, Mr Croome said.

The commitment was made at today’s Tasmanian State ALP Conference by Attorney-General, Lara Giddings.

For more information contact Rodney Croome on 0409 010 668.

Source: Media Release


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