This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
Senthorun Raj is the PoIicy and DeveIopment
Coordinator at the Gay & Lesbian Rights
Lobby and a reguIar contributor to the Pride
in Diversity e-buIIetin.
justice for LGBTI people, this will hopefully become more apparent,
as marriage equality is not the only area of discrimination facing our
Sometimes, politicians are so captivated by the debate (or denial) of
equal relationship recognition, they often forget that discrimination
for sexual and gender minorities is not just conned to the Marriage
While inequalities surrounding relationship recognition plague
the lives of so many couples, Australia still maintains a haphazard
approach to human rights protections for LGBTI people.
Australia often takes the global stage with a strong commitment
to human rights protection. However, despite being a signatory
to numerous international human rights law treaties, such as
the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, systemic
discrimination remains. Much of this is ascribed to the absence of
comprehensive federal anti-discrimination laws and the availability of
In order to ensure ongoing communication with legislators regarding
some of these LGBTI concerns, a new Parliamentary Group has been
established. Chaired by Liberal National MP Warren Entsch, the cross-
party group has members including Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-
Young and Labor MP Graham Perrett.
Characterised as a parliamentary ‘friendship’ network of sorts, this
forum will provide much needed political engagement with a diverse
range of LGBTI issues.
The recent ‘Uncloseting Discrimination’ consultations held by the
NSW Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby (GLRL) have highlighted the
importance of policy reform to engage more broadly when it comes
to human rights.
After all, as individuals were are not solely dened by some
homogeneous gay or lesbian identity. Rather, as a community,
we share diverse intersections in terms of sex, gender, ethnicity,
geography, religion, economic status, ability, age etc.
In addition to marriage equality reform, there remains ongoing
problems with a lack of funding for an LGBTI peak body; social
security burdens; lack of recognition for intersex people in any
legislative agenda; inappropriate status determinations of LGBTI
asylum seekers; and onerous diculties for sex and/or gender
diverse persons in obtaining appropriate identity documentation or
Mr Entsch lamented the circumstances that continue to “out” the
gender histories of people, because they are unable to change
identity documentation. In particularly small communities, Mr Entsch
noted that aside from humiliation and embarrassment, there was
signicant concern over undermining the integrity of people’s mental
health, and even suicide, where persons were not legally recognised
in terms of their own identied sex or gender.
In addition to ensuring adequate legislative change, we need
appropriate policy mechanisms so that equality is not abstract or
theoretical. Remedies and complaints processes are an important
feature to empower people to take action when they feel their rights
have been violated.
diversity in schools, workplaces, aged care facilities and so on, is
another essential. Law reform alone does not eliminate homophobia
or transphobia. We need to ensure an underlying culture change too
– and this only comes with education and ongoing dialogue.
Ultimately, equality or justice should be apolitical. That is, the right
to non-discrimination and equality for LGBTI people should not be
limited to which political party assumes Government. It should be a
core value of our secular democracy.
Martin Hunt, Lend Lease
During my time at Lend Lease I have come to realise that building our
future relies on employing the best people to work with us. As part
of our People Promise, we are committed to providing a diverse &
inclusive environment that encourages a world of career opportunities.
We are looking for talented interns to gain meaningful work experience
and exposure with Lend Lease. Our commitment is to provide you with
an opportunity to learn and grow in a supportive environment, making
a signicant contribution to our multi faceted business. You will
develop strong partnerships with the business areas you are allocated
and gain specic advice and support in the practical application of your
skills and theoretical knowledge.
Join our diverse, supportive and sustainable culture, where like me, you
will get the opportunity to develop your skills and make a dierence
within the business. To nd out more about our internship program
please email email@example.com and quote reference ADC 2011.
We look forward to hearing from you.
PRIDE IN DIVERSITY NEWSLETTER AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2011 13