Exactly one year ago we were facing a challenge we shouldn’t have had to face, and now, it looks like Taiwan is set to do the same.

The postal survey was imposed on us by those opposed to us, but our community worked hard, Australia said Yes, and we finally won.

Now, a year later, opponents of LGBTI equality are using the same playbook in Taiwan.

The Taiwanese court had ruled in favour of marriage equality and the parliament was set to follow. But then the rules changed, and now our LGBTI brothers and sisters in Taiwan are facing a national vote on their equality in November this year.

How did this happen?

To stop marriage equality, opponents have initiated a citizen referendum to define marriage as being between one man and one woman.

To get this off the ground, they only needed 280,000 signatures. This means a small one per cent of the population have decided to force Taiwanese citizens to the polls in order to undo equality.

We know from our own experience just how distressing the misinformation put forward during these campaigns can be.

Already in Taiwan opponents are using the same tactics but much darker. We have heard of full, front-page adverts across national newspapers attacking Taiwan’s LGBTI community and their families.

Taiwan was set to become the first place in Asia with marriage equality, but now due to political games being played and massive funds being pumped into the campaign against marriage equality, the opponents may actually succeed.

Anything is possible when votes like this are initiated.

We recently visited Taiwan to meet with their marriage equality campaign and were extremely impressed with their determination, passion, and commitment to deliver marriage equality to Taiwan.

Like you, I also know how hard it’s going to be. For over a decade Australian Marriage Equality benefitted from international support to help us achieve reform, and now it’s our turn to pay it forward and return the favour.

If we chip in and raise $10,000 together, we can help the Taiwanese campaign employ crucial staff for the next three months.

The money raised will directly funding much-needed digital and communications roles.

These roles will help them activate and grow a positive movement for equality in Taiwan, share impactful messages for change, and counter the misinformation of opponents through powerful video storytelling.

Equality opponents know these kinds of national votes are costly and difficult for equality supporters to win and that’s why they are pushing this strategy all over the world. They brought it here, and now they are sending it straight to Taiwan.

We know what this feels like, we know what they’re going through, and we can help.

Let’s support our mates in Taiwan and celebrate the one year anniversary of marriage equality in Australia by seeing love win in Taiwan.

To support Australian Marriage Equality’s fundraising campaign for Taiwan, click here.

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