Last Friday the NSW Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby and the Australian Human Rights Centre at UNSW held a roundtable discussion on the federal government’s upcoming consolidation of anti-discrimination legislation, bringing together a broad cross-section of the LGBTI community and key legal and public health stakeholders.

The roundtable featured a presentation from the Australian Human Rights Commission and included participants from the LGBTI Health Alliance, the Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations (AFAO), the Victorian Gay & Lesbian Rights Lobby, Wear it Purple, A Gender Agenda, Diversity Council of Australia, Inspire Foundation, Inner City Legal Centre, School of Public Health and Community Medicine at UNSW, the Public Interest Advocacy Centre, as well as the Tasmanian Gay & Lesbian Rights Group. The Acting Secretary, Human Rights and Policy Branch of the Commonwealth Attorney General’s Department, was also in attendance.

The participants discussed issues of definition, coverage and exemptions and re-affirmed the need for comprehensive anti-discrimination provisions for LGBTI people in a consolidated Act. This has been a long-standing aspiration of the NSW Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby and many other LGBTI organisations in Australia.

It is expected that the exposure draft of the legislation will be released shortly and, when it is, members of LGBTI communities can be assured that LGBTI organisations will be ready to respond and converge on Canberra to press the importance of this issue directly with federal members of Parliament.

The GLRL would also like to congratulate AME convenor Alex Greenwich on his election to the NSW seat of Sydney (formerly Bligh) this past weekend, the seat previously held by Clover Moore for 24 years. Alex has done an amazing job forwarding the cause for marriage equality and we are very excited about the difference he’ll be making in the NSW Parliament.

Before we know it, Mardi Gras will be upon us, and the GLRL is warming up for an exciting season in the year of our 25th anniversary.  We’re hoping to put together a big team to make this season our best ever, so we’re sending out a call for volunteers for our events and volunteers committee. If you’re interested in getting on board, email us at: [email protected]

LAINIE ARNOLD  NSW Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby

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