The Australian Human Rights Commission annual human rights awards shortlist is out.
Barrister Debbie Mortimer, who led the case for Victorian queer rural youth group WayOut against a Christan Brethren-run youth camp, has been shortlisted for the Law Award.
WayOut pursued the discrimination case against Christian Youth Camps after they were refused accommodation in 2007 because of their sexuality.
The case was heard in the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) earlier this year and
Judge Felicity Hampel found in favour of WayOut, awarding the group $5000 damages.
In her decision Hampel said the conduct of CYC in refusing WayOut members accommodation was “clearly based on their objection to homosexuality”.
It’s thought the decision could have national ramifications for religious organisations engaging in secular activities and their ability to discriminate.
Shortlisted for the radio award was Brian and Norm: A Love Story recorded for the 360 Documentaries series on ABC Radio National.
The touching story, broadcast in April this year, followed an aging same-sex couple as one Norm is forced to enter a Catholic nursing home. Brian shares his loneliness and fears of anti-gay prejudice as he finds he and Norm forced back into the closet at one of the most difficult time of their lives.
Shortlisted for the television award, the ABC’s Australian Story episode on PFLAG spokeswoman Shelley Argent, Mum’s the Word.
The AHRC’s 2010 Human Rights Medals and Awards will be presented on Friday, December 10.
info: Visit www.humanrights.gov.au