A FULL page advert establishing support for marriage equality from 53 companies in Australia’s business community that went viral a fortnight ago has tripled in another newspaper ad in tomorrow’s Weekend Australian Magazine.

The original full-page ad that featured prominently in The Australian two weeks ago made national and international headlines.

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The lobby group behind the advertisement, Australian Marriage Equality (AME), have announced that tomorrow’s advert (scroll down to view) will feature 154 of Australia’s biggest brands and companies – a three-fold increase on the original ad.

The Star Observer is listed in both advertisements.

“The extraordinary outpouring of support for marriage equality by so many businesses reflects strong support in the community and increases pressure on parliament to act,” AME national director Rodney Croome said.

“The Australian business sector backs marriage equality because it is a reform that is critical to workplace equity, to Australia’s international reputation and competitiveness, to jobs in the wedding sector and to social inclusion.

“The message is clear: the country is ready for change.”

AME said that the drastic increase in companies weighing into the marriage equality debate with their support is a clear indication of strong community and corporate support, adding to the pressure on parliament to pass legislation.

Acting chief executive of law firm Slater ad Gordon Australia, Hayden Stephens, said their clients and employees regarded marriage equality as an important issue.

“In addition to this being an issue for our clients, marriage equality is also an issue for our LGBTI staff; who rightfully want to be seen as equal in the eyes of the law,” he said.

“Legalised discrimination in one area allows discrimination to flourish into other areas. It’s our hope that a change in this area of law will have a positive impact on how members of the LGBTI community are treated throughout their lives; at school, at home and in the workplace.”

When the original ad was published, some of the companies listed faced social media backlash for appearing to “pink wash” their business activities that have been previously accused of disregarding communities and/or employees.

Dow Chemical appeared to cop the most criticism, mostly because it has been implicated in a 1984 gas exposure accident at an Indian pesticide plant in Bhopal, India, which killed over 5000 and injured around 527,000 people.

More companies can declare their support for marriage equality by visiting www.corpsupport.org.au

The latest full-page ad from AME has tripled the number of businesses listed.

The latest full-page ad from AME has tripled the number of businesses listed.

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