South Australia is the latest state to make a move towards legislating for same-sex marriage.
Openly gay South Australian Labor MLC Ian Hunter and Greens MLC Tammy Franks have today given notice to the South Australian Parliament that they will introduce a bill to allow same-sex marriage in the state.
The news follows similar movement in Australia’s southern states.
A Greens’ same-sex marriage bill is set to go before Tasmanian parliament, and this week, Greens candidate for Melbourne Brian Walters has pledged, if elected, he will move a private members bill to allow same-sex marriage in Victoria.
Hunter said the South Australian bill will be based on constitutional legal advice that states can legislate for same-sex marriage because federal laws specifically define marriage as a union between a man and a woman.
“I acknowledge that this bill will raise interesting constitutional questions,” Hunter said.
“I look forward to debating the bill… and the community debate that will ensue.”
Franks said she believes a majority of Australians support same-sex marriage and South Australia can push the issue forward.
“Most of us cannot understand why we even have to argue the case in the 21st century,” she said.
“However, discrimination in Australia persists and we will need legislative reform to change this. “South Australia can lead the way.”
Australian Marriage Equality national convenor Alex Greenwich said AME supports South Australia entering the the race to be the first state to allow same-sex marriage.
“With Ian Hunter strongly advocating for marriage equality… coupled with the support of the Greens, South Australia has a real chance to be the first state in the country to allow same-sex marriage,” he said.