Australia: Second poll confirms rise in support for marriage equality

Support for marriage equality has surged Share on WhatsApp 1 reader comment

A poll has corroborated earlier findings that suggested support for marriage equality had surged.

A Crosby Textor poll earlier this week found that 72% of Australians support the introduction of same-sex marriage, with just 21% opposed, despite continued opposition within the government.

The figures had been markedly surprising, given the previous high had been 64% support.

However, data released by Newspoll confirms the findings, with a second poll finding that marriage equality has 68% support, with 4 out of 10 strongly in favour.

Australian Marriage Equality national director Rodney Croome said: “Newspoll has confirmed what we already knew from the Crosby Textor research, the community debate on marriage equality is over and it’s time for politicians to act.”

“We call on MPs to work together across party boundaries to achieve a reform the Australian people are firmly behind in ever greater numbers.”

AME deputy director, Ivan Hinton said “A great majority of Australians have opened their hearts to the issue of marriage equality, realising it will bring benefits to many families around the country and causes no harm to no one.”

Three years ago 49% of people were in favour of same-sex marriage, and 40% opposed, while a decade ago just 38% supported marriage equality.

The last vote on same-sex marriage in Australia was held in 2012, when the House of Representatives rejected it by a vote of 98-42, and the senate by 41-26.

The governing Liberal party has long opposed equal marriage, with Prime Minister Tony Abbott giving his backing to the successful fight to end the brief recognition of same-sex marriage in the Australian Capital Territory last year.

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Australia: New survey reveals homophobic abuse affects four in five gay athletes

The report has revealed a stark picture of homophobia in Australian sport. Get the latest LGBT headlines in your inbox with our free daily newsletter! Join Share on WhatsApp 0 reader comments

A new survey of Australian sport has revealed that 85 percent of gay sportsmen and -women have seen or experienced homophobic abuse.

The ‘Out in the Fields’ study involved almost 2500 athletes at all levels, and was evenly split between gay and straight respondents, aged 15 upwards. It was launched to mark the Bingham Cup, which will be held in Sydney next month and commemorates the late gay rugby union player Mark Bingham.

The Australian survey is the first phase of what hopes to become an international survey of homophobia in sport.

It found that 85 percent of gay sportspeople surveyed had seen or experienced homophobia, while 48 percent had been direct targets of homophobic abuse. The figures for heterosexual respondents were lower, but still worrying, at 75 percent and 48 percent respectively.

Verbal insults were the most common form of abuse reported, attested by 82 percent of those who said they had experienced homophobia. Social exclusion was reported at 28 percent, and physical assaults were reported in 13 percent of cases.

Sixty-four percent of gay and lesbian respondents said homophobia was more common in sporting environments than in other areas of society.

The impact of homophobia in Australian sport can also be seen in the recent comments of pundit Brian Taylor, who dubbed a player “a big poofter” while commentating on a football match. Although Taylor kept his job, he is now undergoing counselling.

Commenting on the study, Jason Ball, the first openly gay Australian rules footballer, said: “To all of the people who thought that Brian Taylor’s comments weren’t a big deal, this research shows that homophobic language has a profound impact on our sporting culture.”

“Until we create a more inclusive sporting environment, people will feel forced to stay in the closet until their careers are over,” he added.

Last week, Australian swimming legend Ian Thorpe came out publicly during an interview with Michael Parkinson, but said he could not do so sooner because the lie became too big.

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Australia: Sports commentator to keep job after calling player a ‘big poofter’

Brian Taylor will keep his job following the incident Share on WhatsApp 11 reader comments

A sports commentator will be allowed to stay on the air, after he referred to a player as a “big poofter”.

Channel Seven’s Australian Football League commentator Brian Taylor made the remark during the run-up to a Sydney v Carlton game yesterday, when footage was played of Geelong player Harry Taylor celebrating his 150th match.

Interrupting the pre-match presenters, he said: “I don’t know whether you guys down there can hear me or not… I am up here getting ready for the game and I’ve just seen that crap from Harry

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Australia: Senator calls for cross-party support of new same-sex marriage bill

David Leyonhjelm has called for cross-party support to pass equal marriage Get the latest LGBT headlines in your inbox with our free daily newsletter! Join Topics equal marriagegay marriagemarriage equalitysame sex marriagemarriagegay weddingSame-sex weddingweddinglesbian weddinglesbian marriageCivil partnershipsAustraliaTony AbbottsenatorKevin RuddDavid Leyonhjelm Share on WhatsApp 0 reader comments

An Australian Senator has called for cross-party cooperation in passing a new same-sex marriage bill.

The lone Liberal Democrat Senator David Leyonhjelm, who took office this month, announced last week that he would shortly introduce a bill to legalise same-sex marriage, hoping to win broad support from other parties.

He said today: “Throughout history, classical liberals have been instrumental in putting forward the case that led to the major advancements in human rights, such as the abolition of slavery and women’s suffrage.

“Once again it is the turn of classical liberals to step up for the benefit of gay, lesbian and transgender people.

“It is not the job of governments to define relationships. For those of you who have a problem with homosexuality for some reason or another, we are not asking for your approval. I ask merely for your tolerance.

“If your private life is nobody else’s business, I ask you to understand that the private life of others is none of your business, and it is simply not your role to impose your views on others.

“I ask that you understand that the liberties you care about should be available to everybody, and that there is no place in Australia for second class citizens.”

Australian Marriage Equality deputy director, Ivan Hinton said: “Senator Leyonhjelm has highlighted how allowing same-sex couples to marry is a matter of individual freedom from undue government interference in our private lives.

“This will carry weight with Coalition members who value small government and personal freedom.

“We call on Tony Abbott to allow the Coalition a conscience vote and we call on Coalition members who believe in true liberal values to come out in support of marriage equality.

“Clearly, there is support for marriage equality across the political spectrum, so we urge MPs from all parties to work together to make this reform a reality.”

The last vote on same-sex marriage in Australia was held in 2012, when the House of Representatives rejected it by 98-42, and the senate by 41-26.

The governing Liberal party has long opposed equal marriage, with Prime Minister Tony Abbott giving his backing to the successful fight to end the brief recognition of same-sex marriage in the Australian Capital Territory last year.

However, there have been some calls within his party for MPs to be allowed a free vote on the issue, with the Australian Liberal Students’ Federation passing a motion earlier this week calling for marriage equality.

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Australia: Sports commentator seeks counselling after calling player ‘big poofter’

Brian Taylor says he is ‘in the process’ of getting counselling Share on WhatsApp 0 reader comments

A sports commentator has said he is in the process of getting professional counselling, after he attracted criticism for labelling a player a ‘big poofter’.

Channel Seven’s Australian Football League commentator Brian Taylor made the remark during the run-up to a Sydney v Carlton game on Saturday, when footage was played of Geelong player Harry Taylor celebrating his 150th match.

Interrupting the pre-match presenters, he said: “I don’t know whether you guys down there can hear me or not

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Australia: Newly-elected Senator to introduce same-sex marriage bill

David Leyonhjelm could introduce an equal marriage bill Get the latest LGBT headlines in your inbox with our free daily newsletter! Join Share on WhatsApp 1 reader comment

An Australian Senator will reportedly introduce a same-sex marriage bill as a priority, shortly after taking office.

Liberal Democrat David Leyonhjelm took office for New South Wales this month, following his party’s first victory in a federal election last year.

According to Australia Marriage Equality, the Senator – who is the only federal Liberal Democrat representative – will shortly introduce a bill to legalise same-sex marriage, hoping to win broad support from other parties.

In his inaugural speech, Leyonhjelm said: “Liberty is eroded when we are unable to marry the person of our choice, whatever their gender.

“It is not legitimate for government to involve itself in things that an individual voluntarily does to him or herself, or that people choose to do to each other by mutual consent, when nobody else is harmed.”

Australian Marriage Equality director Rodney Croome said: “We welcome Senator Leyonhjelm giving marriage equality the high priority it deserves.”

“Senator Leyonhjelm is a crucial advocate for marriage equality because his case – that marriage equality is about personal freedom from undue government interference in our private lives – will resonate with many Coalition members.”

The group’s deputy director said: “It’s also significant that he has highlighted how the reform is a matter of personal freedom from undue government interference in our private lives.

“Personal freedom is important to many Australians and Senator Leyonhjelm’s speech enjoyed a repeated chorus of support from Government Senators”.

The last vote on same-sex marriage in Australia was held in 2012, when the House of Representatives rejected it by 98-42, and the senate by 41-26.

The governing Liberal party has long opposed equal marriage, with Prime Minister Tony Abbott giving his backing to the successful fight to end the brief recognition of same-sex marriage in the Australian Capital Territory last year.

However, there have been some calls within his party for MPs to be allowed a free vote on the issue, with the Australian Liberal Students’ Federation passing a motion earlier this week calling for marriage equality.

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Australia: Judge suspended for claiming incest is no longer taboo because homosexuality is legal

District Court Judge Garry Neilson has been suspended Get the latest LGBT headlines in your inbox with our free daily newsletter! Join Topics HomosexualityAustraliacourtrapejudgerulingincestbrotherchargesister Share on WhatsApp 0 reader comments

An Australian judge has been suspended, after claiming that incest can no longer be treated as “unnatural” because people have accepted homosexuality.

Ruling in the case of a 58-year-old man accused of repeatedly raping his sister, District Court Judge Garry Neilson refused to admit evidence from a previous trial where the man had pleaded guilty to a charge of incest.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, he said that given homosexuality had gone from criminalised to accepted, “a jury might find nothing untoward in the advance of a brother towards his sister once she had sexually matured, had sexual relationships with other men and was now available.”

He added: “If this was the 50s and you had a jury of 12 men there, which is what you’d invariably have, they would say it’s unnatural for a man to be interested in another man or a man being interested in a boy. Those things have gone.

“They are both mature adults. The complainant has been sexually awoken, shall we say, by having two relationships with men and she had become ‘free’ when the second relationship broke down.

“The only thing that might change that is the fact that they were a brother and sister but we’ve come a long way from the 1950s

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