Victorian Animal Justice Party MP Andy Meddick’s eldest daughter Kielan, who came out as trans last year, was attacked on Thursday night on Smith Street in Melbourne. The attack is believed to be linked to her father’s support for the state’s pandemic response bill.
Warning: This story has details of a violent attack on a trans woman and might be distressing to some readers. For 24 hour crisis support and suicide prevention call Lifeline on 13 11 14. For Australia-wide LGBTQI peer support call QLife on 1800 184 527 or webchat.
Meddick had earlier revealed about receiving death threats after he and other cross bench MPs negotiated with the government for supporting the bill that is currently before the legislative council.
“Like many others, I have been desperately worried about the comments, threats and intimidation that have been levelled at me and my family, as well as staff, and of course my colleagues, and now my worst fears have turned into reality,” Meddick said in a statement on social media.
— Andy Meddick MP (@AndyMeddickMP) November 19, 2021
Staff Of The 86 Helped Kielan
The attack took place on Smith Street in Collingwood, in a neighbourhood dotted with some of Melbourne’s popular gay bars. The staff of cabaret and drag bar The 86 came to Kielan’s rescue after she was attacked.
In an Instagram story, Kielan revealed the horrific details of the incident when a man chased her down the street and attacked her.
“Tonight on Smith Street in Fitzroy I was attacked by a man for being ‘political’ he chased me down the street as I called for help he threw a spray can at my head. I started bleeding a lot as I kept running until I made it to The 86. They closed and locked the doors and treated my wound as best they could.”
Kielan said that she suffered a three centimetre gash on the back of her head as a result of the attack. She thanked the staff of The 86 “for helping me when I was bleeding on their floor. Thank you for helping me when I was screaming for help and no one else did. Thank you so so so much”.
Attacked Linked To Victoria’s Pandemic Bill
These actions are extreme, and no matter why it happened – this behaviour must be condemned and never, ever excused.
— Dan Andrews (@DanielAndrewsMP) November 19, 2021
Meddick thanked those who had helped his daughter. “My deepest gratitude is with those nearby who helped her when she was most in need, and to the wonderful carers and health workers who have treated us since. She will be okay but it will take time,” said Meddick.
Meddick said he would not be making any further comments and asked people to “understand and respect the fact that comments, insults, intimidation and incitement can all have very real and absolutely devastating consequences.”
Meddick had last year come out as the proud parent of trans children. He and and his family were subjected to vile transphobic messages as well as death threats over his support for the bill.
MPs And Families Face Death Threats
In recent weeks protests over Victoria’s pandemic response bill have been led by far right extremists, anti-vaxxers and conspiracy theorists. MPs and their families have been threatened and in one instance their residential addresses were published on an encrypted social media app.
Videos from the protest have shown violent rhetoric directed at Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews. A punching doll with the Premier’s image was placed near makeshift gallows during one protest – the act received widespread condemnation.
Premier Andrews had on Friday revealed that he and his family too had been targeted by “rabid anti-vaxxers” with “violent and extremist threats”.
This is not on. It has no place in Australia. I join with all Australians in unequivocally condemning these actions. This is not just an attack on an innocent person but an attack on our very democracy. My thoughts – and those of all Australians – are with you Andy & your family. https://t.co/XADJITeMNZ
— Scott Morrison (@ScottMorrisonMP) November 19, 2021
Following the news of the attack on Meddick’s daughter, Prime Minister Scott Morrison sent a message to the MP through social media.
“This is not on. It has no place in Australia. I join with all Australians in unequivocally condemning these actions. This is not just an attack on an innocent person but an attack on our very democracy. My thoughts – and those of all Australians – are with you Andy & your family,” Morrison posted on Twitter.
Police in a statement said that they were investigating following the incident in Fitzroy.
“Investigators have been told a 25-year-old woman was spray painting over a poster on Smith Street when she was approached by an unknown man about 11pm. The pair had an argument before the woman threw the spray can towards the man as she attempted to leave the scene,” said the police.
“The man followed the woman and threw the spray can which struck her in the back of the head. The man left the scene as staff from a nearby venue rendered assistance to the woman before she attended hospital for treatment to minor injuries,” the police added.
If you feel distressed reading the story, you can reach out to support services.
For 24 hour crisis support and suicide prevention call Lifeline on 13 11 14
For Australia-wide LGBTQI peer support call QLife on 1800 184 527 or webchat.