A rainbow path was unveiled in Prince Alfred Park in Sydney on Tuesday to commemorate legalisation of same-sex marriage in Australia.
Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore officially unveiled a 90-metre rainbow path at Prince Alfred Park in Surry Hills to commemorate the third anniversary of marriage equality. Moore said that she still remembers the historic moment in the park on November 15, 2017.
“30,000 of us gathered at Prince Alfred Park to hear the results of the marriage equality postal survey. We were anxious, scared, excited, hopeful,” said Moore. “On that day, love won.”
Just in time for Mardi Gras: the new Rainbow Path in Surry Hills is finished!
The 90-metre rainbow path in Prince Alfred Park commemorates the legalisation of same-sex marriage in Australia. (1/3) pic.twitter.com/kFFLakQS9I
— City of Sydney (@cityofsydney) February 16, 2021
The Australian government had implemented a postal plebiscite on the issue of marriage equality, asking the question: “Should the law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry?” It inspired pro-marriage equality rallies all over the nation, gaining support of international celebrities like John Oliver, and big tech companies like Apple and Google.
On November 15 2017, Sydneysiders anxiously waited for results in Prince Alfred Park. It was a monumental victory with around 7,817,247 responses (61.6%) voting for marriage equality. While NSW gathered 57.8% yes votes, the maximum yes votes came from Australian Capital Territory with 74% votes. After the declaration of results, supporters broke into happy tears. Celebrations were held nationwide, both in public places and at homes.
On December 7 2017, the Australian federal parliament passed legislation amending the Marriage Act 1961 to allow same-sex couples to marry. “I am proud to have represented the electorate of Flinders in voting YES. To my friends, it’s your time. It’s your moment of full equality. You have the right to choose,” Greg Hunt, a member of the Liberal Party, had said at the time.
It was the Surry Hills Creative Precinct that put forward the idea for a Rainbow footpath. The group is a non-for profit organisation that aims to promote Surry Hills as a cultural hub by advocating for the area and its needs. The group’s president Leigh Harris said that the rainbow walk will be a “permanent reminder” of the historic day. After intense discussions within the community, the plan was eventually implemented. Just in time for the Mardi Gras parade, the path was unveiled on Tuesday.
“The path will represent both the progress we have made towards equality and the long way to go before our LGBTIQ communities are free of discrimination,” Moore had said in 2020.
Love had been triumphant then. And hopefully, it will triumph over and over.