South Australia has become the final state in Australia to recognise non-biological same-sex parents on birth certificates of children born to same-sex couples.

The Family Relationships (Parentage) Amendment Bill 2010 came out of a yearlong state Parliament Social Development Committee inquiry into laws covering same-sex parenting. Openly gay Labor MLC Ian Hunter headed the committee.

The legislation, introduced by Liberal Unley MP David Pisoni, passed through the Lower House on Thursday in a vote of 24-15.

“This legislation passed the Legislative Council several months ago by a massive margin, and has now passed the Lower House by a similarly large margin,” Hunter said.

“I congratulate Let’s Get Equal for their successful campaign which persuaded politicians from all parties to support their call to allow both same-sex partners to be registered on the birth certificate of their child.

“South Australia was the only state in the country not to recognise same-sex parents on birth certificates and I was disappointed the Government did not move on this matter when I raised it first with them last year.

“I am particularly pleased that the bill has passed as it was one of the main recommendations of the Social Development Committee recent inquiry into same-sex parenting.”

Hunter acknowledged the “instrumental” support for the bill of Pisoni, Greens MLC Tammy Franks and Labor MPs Frances Bedford and Steph Keys.

Franks introduced the bill in the Upper House last November.

Franks and Hunter have a long history of working together on GLBTI issues, and co-sponsored a bill that would have legalised same-sex marriage under South Australian law if the Government had not torpedoed it earlier this year.

At the time Hunter made headlines when he compared his own party’s opposition to marriage equality for same-sex couples to the White Australia policy, which was “a shameful blot on the ALP’s soul”.
“Homosexuals want to marry for the same reason everyone else does it — because they love someone,” he said.

South Australia already recorded non-biological heterosexual parents on birth certificates.

Hunter will launch the poster for Adelaide’s GLBTI community festival Feast tomorrow at Adelaide’s Colonel Light Hotel.

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