Marriage equality lobby group Australian Marriage Equality (AME) are urging same-sex couples who are married to indicate it when completing Census forms tonight.

AME spokesman Peter Furness said it’s important same-sex married couples make their numbers known.

“It is an important sign of respect that the Australian Bureau of Statistics will allow same-sex partners to indicate if they are married on the Census,” he said.

“It also highlights how nonsensical the federal Government’s failure to recognise same-sex marriage has become.

“We urge all same-sex partners who want to indicate they are married to take advantage of the fact that now they can.”

Same-sex couples who believe themselves to be married do not have to have been married in a jurisdiction where same-sex marriage is legal to be recorded.

INFO: Find AME’s Cenus guide at www.becounted.org.au

Meanwhile OII Australia is urging the intersex community to include their intersex status when filling in the Census.

In protest against the Census’ limited option of nominating as only male and female, Organisation Intersex International (OII) Australia president Gina Wilson said intersex people should record their identity in the ‘religion’ section — which allows an optional response — to point to the intersex community’s lack of inclusion.

“It’s kind of a backdoor way of tickling them along a little bit, but there are people out there who want this to be taken seriously and want it to be counted so we can even get a slight indication of the numbers,” she told the Star Observer.

Other sections of the sex and gender diverse community have called on people to mark ‘no gender’ next to the question on sex. However, only marks on the Census form denoting male or female will be officially recorded.

Currently when a person does not nominate a sex, they are allocated one using other information in the Census form and other data averages.

On another front, The Atheist Foundation of Australia (AFA) and the Australian Secular Lobby (ASL) are calling on people to make sure they mark ‘No religion’ on their census forms if they are not actually religious believers.

The AFA and ASL say that many people identify culturally with a faith community and mark that religion despite no longer believing, and are concerned that religious denominations then use this information when lobbying government on public policy and issues of personal morality.

INFO: www.censusnoreligion.org

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