Gay dads Trevor Elwell and Peter West say they are pleased their local member Julia Gillard, is now leading the country.

The couple introduced their twin daughters Gaia and Evelyn to Gillard at the ‘Welcoming the Babies’ ceremony she held in her electorate of Lalor in Melbourne’s west last year.

“It was quite a small event but Julia was great with the children,” Elwell told Southern Star.

Elwell said he was pleased he was able to chat with Gillard about the lack of recognition gay families face in areas such as marriage.

“I told her I knew she had to toe party line, but same-sex parents do have children and any changes that take place in law need to include them,” he said.

“When the news came [Gillard would replace Kevin Rudd as PM] I … thought ‘I’m pleased I was able to have the ear of the Prime Minister to talk about gay parents and tell her our concerns’. ”

The baby welcoming ceremony was held at the Werribee Town Hall last August. Families with babies up to 12-months-old were invited to attend and receive a certificate and an information pack to help with the early stages of parenting.

Elwell said he hopes Gillard is more willing to listen to the community’s concerns, especially when it comes to parenting.

A forum for gay dads will be held on September 18 and 19. For more information contact the Drummond Street Relationship Centre.

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