Following opportunities advertised to the public, the GLRL applied for and was successful in receiving a Community Services grant worth $20,800 from the City of Sydney last week.

We will use this money to run a public campaign to educate our community about the recent and upcoming changes to legislation affecting same-sex couples. We are thrilled to have this opportunity and sincerely grateful to the City of Sydney for its continued support of not only the GLRL, but the LGBT community more widely.

This sum of money will allow us to provide campaign engagement with the Sydney metropolitan area through advertising and events. This means we will be able to provide vital information about these life-changing reforms to potentially thousands of lesbians and gay men.

As helpful as this grant will be, the GLRL will not be able to provide the necessary facts and advice to all the same-sex couples in NSW and Australia. The GLRL will start the education process, but we cannot do it alone.

After so many years of financial and legal discrimination, our community needs and deserves a broader education campaign to be undertaken by the Federal Government. Many couples will have to change the way they plan financially and live their lives and they need comprehensive and accessible information to ensure that the transition is as smooth as possible.

The Federal Government only has plans to run a limited campaign to those currently receiving Centrelink payments. While this is a good first step, social security being one of the areas most likely to significantly change people’s lives, it is far from enough.

Equality will not be delivered through legislative reform alone -” people need to know and understand their rights in order to assert them -” and if this government is serious about same-sex equality then it needs to educate as well as legislate. Without education, the job will only be half done.

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