MARRIAGE equality activists have labelled Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull a “puppet of the right wing conservatives in his party” and plan to host a march to his electorate office with a group of influential leaders to voice their support for the issue.
Organised by Australians for Equality, people will meet at Sydney’s Taylor Square on Saturday April 9 to hear some speeches before setting off as a group to the PM’s office in the eastern suburb of Edgecliff.
“Then we see everything that’s happened with Safe Schools and we’ve realised there’s a lot more hostility than we thought.
“We thought we could trust Malcolm Turnbull and that he was gong to be moderate leader. But he’s lost his voice and has become a puppet of the right wing conservatives in his party.”
The event will be MC’d by GetUp!’s Sally Rugg and invited speakers include Enoch Mailangi, ALP deputy leader Tanya Plibersek, Castle Hill High School students, Gay & Lesbian Rights Lobby (NSW GLRL) co-convenor Chris Pycroft, Greens MPs Jenny Leong and Dejay Tobork, Paddington Uniting Church’s Ben Gilmour and PFLAG’s Geoff Thomas.
Turnbull himself was also invited to speak but his staff told organisers he would not be in Sydney on Saturday.
NSW GLRL co-convenor Chris Pycroft said he would be speaking at the rally because he wants to urge the government to pass marriage equality through a vote in parliament.
“We know that the overwhelming majority of Australians are in support of marriage equality, and we don’t need a plebiscite to tell us this,” he said.
“We don’t need a costly plebiscite, and we certainly don’t need negative campaigning that could impact on the wellbeing of many people in our communities.”
Argent said it was necessary to have another pro-marriage equality rally to show Turnbull that LGBTI people would not give up on the issue.
“When we see so many countries that are even more conservative than us, I don’t want to see us going backwards,” he said.
“In terms of the plebiscite, we’re not horses that want to win a popularity race… and we’re just asking him (Turnbull) to enable a conscience vote in parliament.”
Details for Saturday’s event can be found here.