As a Greens MP, the recognition and equal treatment of people with diverse genders and sexualities is important to me. In Parliament in 2018 I proudly voted to abolish “forced divorce”, where married trans people could not change their legal gender without getting divorced. In my speech at the time, I urged the Government to do more to recognise LGBT+ people.
In 2021, I sponsored a petition by Maiwar local Esther Vale that asks the Government to reform the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Act in order to recognise and protect LGBT+ people. In 2022 I also sponsored a petition by local resident Sel to remove transphobic and anti-sex worker provisions in our Anti-Discrimination laws.
Both petitions received a huge amount of community support, and the Government subsequently introduced a bill to:
- Remove the requirement for surgery before changing the gender marker on their birth certificate
- Recognise people of genders other than male or female, and allow parents to choose whether to include a gender on a new Birth Certificate
- Recognise same-sex and non-binary parents by giving more options for the terminology to register parents on a Birth Certificate
- Update the Anti-Discrimination Act to remove an exemption that allows employers to discriminate against trans and gender diverse folks and sex workers
There’s still more to do, like removing or reducing the prohibitive costs of updating your details and removing limits on how many times you can change your name, but overall these changes represent massive progress and are a huge credit to the hard work of LGBTQ+ campaigners.
I’m really proud to have worked on these campaigns alongside the LGBTQ+ community. If there’s something you’d like to see to improve the safety and livelihoods of queer people, please don’t hesitate to get in touch and I’ll see how I can help.