People from cultural backgrounds intolerant of homosexuality attended a Greens forum in the inner west last week to discuss the party’s “no compromise” policy of full equality and marriage for all regardless of sexuality or gender identity.
Senator Kerry Nettle told the forum she never minimised the importance of gay equality even when facing a hostile crowd such as Lakemba Mosque.
“I said we probably wouldn’t see eye to eye, but that was okay,” Nettle said.
“It was an opportunity to explain why we believe in equality.”
While there was nobody opposing the policy at the forum in Stanmore, hosted by Grayndler candidate Saeed Khan, many in the audience had left cultures and countries that could not accept their sexual orientation.
Iftikhar Nasim was the first openly gay poet in Pakistan before becoming a rights activist in Chicago, and told the forum being gay means you are “likely to get killed” in these countries.
Khan spoke of his late cousin who, it became apparent, was gay despite being married to a woman for cultural reasons.
“His whole life he lived a lie,” Khan said. “We all know someone who has to deal with these issues.”
The forum also introduced the Greens candidate for Watson, Christine Donayre, and for Lowe, Marc Rerceretnam.

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