In recent times, marriage equality has becomes a hot issue across the globe. The United States, Canada, South Africa, New Zealand, Latin America, and much of Western Europe have legalised it in recent years with increasingly bipartisan support on the issue.
Kevin Rudd was the first sitting Prime Minister to endorse the issue with his support, and since then Labor has adopted measures to introduce marriage equality as well as the Greens Party and some members of the Coalition.
Brisbane City Council recently voted to support marriage equality, with the motion put by LNP Lord Mayor Graham Quirk.
So why hasn’t our local Federal MP Andrew Laming come out in support of marriage equality?
The results and evidence strongly suggests overwhelming community support on the issue. In the Redlands, marriage equality was supported by 94% of 700 respondents who took part in a survey conducted by Redlands Residents – Your Voice on Marriage Equality who have worked with the group Australian Marriage Equality and polling experts.
A national survey in 2014 by Crosby – Textor found 72% support for the issue of marriage equality.
Andrew Laming has said his surveys suggest only 50% of locals support the issue. This raises questions about how accurate his electorate surveys really are, and how much he may over politicize issues.
When Mr Laming says he doesn’t care about surveys put forward to him reflecting on what his constituents want then something is wrong here. Cherry picking on issues is not how locals wish to see their representatives behave.
Love is love no matter it being between a man or a woman or somebody of the same gender. Queensland has moved beyond its dark days of criminalizing LGBTIQ people for being who they are.
Who can forget the hard tireless work committed by figures such as former Premier Anna Bligh and Grace Grace MP who helped bring about civil union partnerships. Apologies to this community may also be a good step such as one made by the Premier of Victoria Daniel Andrews for past wrongs and treatment towards people for being who they are.
Marriage Equality needs to occur. The federal Liberal National Coalition parties are pandering to the far right conservative bigotry that exists in our community by proposing a plebiscite. It’s an unnecessary delaying tactic.
Redlanders need to take this issue directly to all three levels of government. Self-interest driven political careerism seems to be holding back action on an issue that needs to be solved quickly and easily.
Do local councillors support marriage equality?
Redland City councillors, acting as community representatives and leaders, could follow the recent initiative of Brisbane’s Lord Mayor and pass a motion supporting the legalisation of marriage between consenting adults regardless of sex, sexuality or gender identity.
Then whoever is elected on 2 July to represent the Redlands in Federal parliament will have a clearer understanding of what the local community wants done about this issue.
Callen Sorensen – Karklis
Callen is an active member of the Australian Fabians Society, ALP, Crime Stoppers, Meals on Wheels and is a Quandamooka Noonucle Indigenous person with a strong commitment to community. Callen has worked in the retail and market research sectors and is currently a student at Griffith University.