Marriage equality is a human right

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The Greens believe that freedom of sex, sexuality and gender identity are fundamental human rights.

The Greens are the only party standing up for full equality for all Australians.

The majority of Australians want marriage equality so that everyone can marry the person they love.

Around the world countries are supporting the rights of their citizens; and marriage equality is an inevitable reform in Australia as we follow the lead of countries like Canada, Sweden, South Africa, New Zealand and recently, France.

The Greens are the only party pushing for marriage equality in Parliament, the old parties having consistently voted down our Bills, denying marriage rights to same-sex couples.

When a Bill was recently introduced into the Federal Parliament, the old parties combined to block a vote on the issue.

Providing same-sex couples with the same legal and social recognition of their relationships in no way infringes upon the rights of others.

Allowing same-sex marriage is about extending the privileges already enjoyed by the majority to an excluded minority who differ simply in terms of the sex of the person with whom they are in a committed relationship.

Further, and very importantly, lifting the ban on same-sex marriage is not only about addressing the rights of this minority group; it is about protecting the rights of people in general. If we say exclusion to certain basic privileges is okay for some, then we are opening up the doors to introducing laws as we see fit to exclude others.

When I introduced a Notice of Motion to Newcastle City Council to advocate on behalf of Newcastle residents denied marriage equality, the conservatives combined to block a vote on the issue.

It is important for our local elected Councillors to stand up and advocate for our residents, not just about marriage equality, but also about equity of access to health services and a coherent approach to addressing the impacts of climate change.

In fact, Councillors have two clearly defined roles under Section 232 of the Local Government Act 1993: one is as a member of the governing body of Council to guide the administration and delivery of council services and the other is represent the interests of all people in our community, including those who may be different from the majority.

We want our elected representatives to stand up and advocate on our behalf.

Only the Greens have consistently stood up for full equality for all Australians.

Michael Osborne

Greens Candidate for the seat of Newcastle

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