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Displaying items by tag: state - Guidetogay.com

LGBT Issues in Queensland Election: Where the parties stand

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Queensland's Healthy Communities organisation, QAHC has today issued an overview of the political parties standing for election in the Australian state of Queensland's state wide elections this month. Take a look through each parties position as it stands with issues relevant to the GLBTIQ community.


Queensland Labor Party


Track Record


Labor has reformed various laws affecting LGBT people, including decriminalising homosexuality, introducing anti-discrimination legislation, recognising de-facto same-sex couples and in its last term altruistic surrogacy, extending the presumption of parenthood in same-sex headed families and introducing Civil Partnerships. Labor has continued to invest in HIV services, including Healthy Communities and has had a whole of government HIV, Hepatitis C and STIs strategy in place. Recent years have seen some progress in addressing other health and wellbeing issues for the LGBT community, with the establishment of the LGBTI Roundtable, commitment statement on LGBTI issues, inclusion of LGBT people and communities in a number of government strategies (e.g. older people, mental health), producing a guide to working with LGBTI people and communities, funding the production of an online directory of LGBTI groups and services and a needs assessment of LGBT community groups. Healthy Communities has also received funding for an alcohol, tobacco & other drugs service and a mental health (disaster relief) service.

Future Plans

While no new plans for the LGBTI community were announced in the election period, there are a number of previously announced or initiated activities that would continue, including, amending the 'gay panic defence' laws, reviewing the anti-discrimination legislation, continuing Civil Partnerships, continuing the LGBTI Roundtable and new funding to Open Doors of $150,000 over 3 years.

Comment

Labor have shown a good commitment to law reform over the years, although there is still more to do (e.g. age of consent). Labor has also shown a good commitment to HIV services, with a very good strategy in place (although this has now been allowed to lapse). Work to address other LGBT health and wellbeing issues has been slower to develop, with most progress being made in their last term, particularly the LGBTI Roundtable and its activities.

Liberal National Party


Track Record

Being out of government for 20 of the past 22 years means there is little track record on LGBT issues for the LNP. Most recently they voted against Civil Partnerships and altruistic surrogacy. The current Shadow Minister for Communities, Fiona Simpson has previously spoken in support of Exodus, an organisation that claims to "cure" homosexuality.

Future Plans

The LNP did not return our election survey and we are not aware of any plans or initiatives to deal specifically with the needs of the LGBTI community. The LNP have said they will look to repeal Civil Partnerships and consider changes to laws relating to unwanted sexual advances (‘gay panic defence).

Comment

The LNP's approach to LGBT issues is at best unknown, but their intention to repeal Civil Partnerships has left many feeling fearful about what else might be wound back and a lack of a forward agenda for the LGBT community. It is not clear if existing initiatives (e.g. LGBTI Roundtable) would continue under an LNP government. The LNP will need to work hard to build the trust and confidence of the LGBT community.

Queensland Greens


Track Record

Not having a member of parliament in Queensland means there has been little opportunity for the Greens to develop a track record on LGBT issues. However they have had a specific LGBTI policy at the last few elections and have been active in other states and territories and nationally on LGBTI issues.

Future Plans

The Greens did not return our election survey but they do have an LGBTI policy which includes commitments to equality of access to adoption, amending the criminal code so that non-violent sexual advances do not constitute a defence of provocation, equal age of consent, state documents reflecting a person’s chosen gender, expanding the LGBTI roundtable to whole of government, increasing numbers and role of LGBTI police liaison officers, funding for anti-violence campaigns, establishing a peak body for LGBTI organisations, funding for a state-wide LGBTI mental health service and access to appropriate medical procedures and counselling for transgender and intersex people.

Comment

The Greens have been a long term supporter of LGBT issues and have initiated important reforms in other states and nationally.

Katter's Australian Party


Track Record

Bob Katter is well known for comments against the LGBT community, and most recently a widely condemned homophobic advert. The current Australian Party member of Queensland Parliament and state leader, Aidan McLindon has used LGBT issues, particularly Rip & Roll, to create controversy. Mr McLindon also voted against Civil Partnerships and Altruistic Surrogacy.

Future Plans

The Australian Party did not return our election survey. They have publicly announced that they would repeal Civil Partnerships.

Comment

The leadership of Katter's Australian Party do not to support LGBT issues and indeed will work against our interests. Some individual candidates have however spoken in support of LGBT issues and against their leadership's stance (e.g. the homophobic advert).

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