The Australian Capital Territory or ACT dropped transgender and intersex people from the territories new same sex marriage law. According to Out in Perth the changes were made so the bill would have a better chance of standing up to the federal government’s promised High Court challenge.
ACT Attorney General Simon Corbell had told the ABC that the government is following the advice of constitutional law experts and provisions for transgender people will be added at a later date.
“We recognise that the views of a number of constitutional experts are that we should put that issue beyond doubt and the terminology that’s applied in our bill.”
“If our bill is upheld we will certainly move at a later date to expand its scope,” Mr Cordell said.
Australian trans and intersex people express their frustration at being excluded at the last moment. Trans Health Australia had this to say about it on facebook:
It is such a pity that “Gay Marriage Rights in Australia” also fails to change their name, and realise that “GAY MARRIAGE” or “SAME SEX MARRIAGE IS NOT MARRIAGE EQUALITY and now they wonder why the trans* and intersex communities have these types of problems? “
WHERE TO FROM HERE?
‘Separate but equal’ is not equal. It shouldn’t matter where you live, who you love or what sex you are.
After the bill passes in the ACT tomorrow, thousands of Australian couples will be able to marry their ‘same-sex’ partner for the first time in the ACT but there will still be couples who are excluded and there will still be couples forced to divorce because of their legal sex status or the sex of their partner. This is not the ‘fair go’ Australians pride themselves on. This is not ‘marriage equality’ for Australia. This is ‘same-sex marriage’ in the ACT. The only way we can achieve full and inclusive marriage equality is to change the Federal Marriage Act. It’s important that as we celebrate tomorrow that we remember that and most importantly tell all our family and friends and our Federal politicians.
We will not rest until ALL Australians in ALL states are treated fairly and have the right to marry the person they love and have their love recognised as equal. “No freedom till we’re equal. Damn right I support it.”
Listen to Professor George Williams, constitutional law expert at the University of New South Wales explain to ABC why he believes these changes challenge proof the law Click here (opens in a MP3 window).