Gay marriage push in Australia

2012-02-13 08:56

kalahari.com

Sydney - Two bills calling for the legalisation of gay marriage were introduced to Australia's parliament on Monday in a move campaigners said would add momentum to the push for equality.

The private member's bills, introduced by left-leaning Greens lawmaker Adam Bandt and Stephen Jones from the ruling Labour party, take to three the pieces of legislation now before the parliament calling for gay marriage rights.

Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young brought a similar bill in the upper house in September 2010 which is now being examined by a legislative inquiry.

None of the bills have enough support to pass into law but rights campaigners said their introduction, which follows Labour's reversal of its official policy to pro-gay marriage in December, showed the tide was turning.

"The Jones bill demonstrates the immense momentum behind reform," said Alex Greenwich, convenor of the Australian Marriage Equality lobby group.

"Three months ago the Labour Party was officially opposed to reform and now we have a Labour member leading the way towards equality."

He described Monday's events as a "milestone on the road to equality".

Equal rights

Greenwich said rights advocates wanted both Jones and Bandt's bills to be examined by the Senate committee looking into Hanson-Young's bill so that "the best possible legislation can be developed and put forward".

Jones said there would not be a debate or vote for some months yet.

In Australia marriage is mandated by federal legislation, so although civil same-sex unions are recognised in five states, the couples are not seen as "married" by the federal government.

All the same, same-sex couples have equal rights with heterosexual couples in areas such as pension schemes and medical benefits.

Until December there had been bipartisan opposition to same-sex marriage in Australia and though Labour's official platform has changed, the party agreed to vote on conscience rather than in bloc, meaning there is presently little prospect of legal change.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard opposes gay marriage, and the conservative Liberal-National coalition has made clear that its members will be expected to uphold the current heterosexual definition of marriage if a vote is called.

"Our position is clear. We believe that a marriage is between a man and a woman and that's the way the Coalition will be voting," said Liberal frontbencher Joe Hockey.

Read more on:    julia gillard  |  australia  |  gay rights
NEXT ON NEWS24X

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
3 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Thursday Stellenbosch - 18:16 PM
    Road name: R44 Southbound
    DELAYS between the R310 Adam Tas Street and Paradyskloof Road
  • Thursday Milnerton - 17:45 PM
    Road name: Marine Drive Northbound
    DELAYS between Boundary Road and Blaauwberg Road
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2 TV Series for R250

Get 2 TV Series box sets for R250 and save up to R148! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Pre-order the Xbox One

Get this all-in-one entertainment system with live TV, movies, social networking and gaming. Pre-order now!

Up to 50% off hair care products!

Save up to 50% on professional hair care products at kalahari.com. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

30% off academic books

Score a mind blowing 30% off academic books! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing deals on electronics!

Save up to 35% on electronics. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Nokia N9

The Nokia N9 has a beautiful one-piece, unibody design where...

From R2899.85

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Your heart is big and you are sensitive to the needs of those around you. Your humanitarian side is emphasized today and you may...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.