South Australian upper house passes motion backing marriage equality

This week, the South Australian Legislative Council passed a motion supporting marriage equality. The motion was brought by Greens MLC Tammy Franks and supported by ALP, Liberal and independent MLCs who all had a conscience vote on the motion.

Executive Director of The Equality Campaign, Tiernan Brady said “it is wonderful news that the South Australian Parliament has endorsed marriage equality for all Australians. The vote reflects the will of the people of South Australia and the entire country. The vote sends a powerful message to all LGBTI people in South Australia that the Legislative Council supports equal status and dignity for them.

"The majority of Australians, an increasing number of local governments, religious leaders and now the South Australian upper house support marriage equality - it is time for a parliamentary vote for marriage equality in Australia," said Lee Carnie, lawyer at the Human Rights Law Centre.

"Marriage equality is a federal issue, but strong support from state and local leaders sends a clear message to the public, the LGBTIQ community and federal politicians that marriage equality is long overdue," said Lee Carnie.

"I married my wonderful husband Christopher in Canada 12 years ago, but when he died 15 months ago Australia still did not recognise our marriage," said Andrew Birtwistle-Smith, Chair of the South Australian Rainbow Advocacy Alliance.

"As a proud Aboriginal gay person, I want all Australians to be able to marry their soul mate and have that commitment recognised under our laws," said Mr Birtwistle-Smith. "Our South Australian politicians are doing what they can, but we call on our federal politicians to do their job and vote on marriage equality."