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The Gay & Lesbian Rights Lobby (GLRL) notes the release of the National Human Rights Consultation Committee report which is the result of one of the largest inquiries ever undertaken in Australia. Whilst the GLRL welcomes the recommendations found in the report, including the introduction of a Human Rights Act, it expresses disappointment at the lack of express recommendations for civil marriage equality and freedom from discrimination for gay and lesbian Australians. 

The GLRL supports the recommendations made in the report, as it provides a platform to advocate for better protection for lesbians and gay men. However, we are also disappointed that despite the Committee identifying concerns relevant to the LGBT community, the report does not make any explicit recommendations to address these concerns. 

Benjamin Keats, Co-Convenor of the GLRL, calls on the Government to accept the Report’s recommendations. “The Report recognises the role of education in improving and promoting human rights in Australia, and recommends a national education program. This is consistent with our submission to the Committee that the Government should put in place a national public education program about the human rights of the lesbian and gay community,” he said. 

Kellie McDonald, Co-Convenor of the GLRL welcomes the Committee’s recommendation to audit and amend federal legislation, policies and practices to ensure their compliance with Australia’s international human rights obligations. “The GLRL will be using this recommendation to lobby the Government for the introduction of federal laws to prohibit discrimination on the ground of sexual orientation.” 

Ms McDonald also welcomed the Committee’s recommendation for the enactment of a Human Rights Act. “The GLRL’s submission emphasised the need for a Human Rights Act to protect a broad range of human rights recognised at international law. Importantly, the Act proposed by the Committee would also allow individuals to bring claims again public authorities and seek remedies for breaches of their civil and political rights,” she said. 

While supporting the Committee’s recommendations, the GLRL believes that the Human Rights Act should expressly provide for the rights of lesbians and gay men, including the right to freedom from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. In addition, the GLRL urges the Australian Government to build on the Committee’s recommendations by ensuring a nationally consistent approach to anti-discrimination laws and the recognition of same-sex families. 

To view the GLRL submission to the National Human Rights Consultation, please visit:

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