Home' LOTL : April 2005 Contents 7
Recent letter writers appear to have
misunderstood Jackie Braw's reference to
Women's Health Centres in the scheme of
lesbian health in this state ("In the Pink,"
February LOTL). ACON has always
acknowledged the amazing amount of work
that Women's Health Centres in NSW, and
indeed across the country, have done in
addressing health issues for lesbians over
It is because of these efforts that ACON has
been able to build our Lesbian Health
Project and because of our partnerships with
Women's Health Centres that we are able to
conduct this work in all of our branches. It is
a tough job to try and tackle much of this
work and we are thankful for the many
barriers that women in these Centres have
helped to break down in the past -- but there
is still a great deal more to achieve.
ACON and our Lesbian Health Project
Officers look forward to continuing to work
closely with Women's Health Centres to
address all of the health issues faced by
lesbians as outlined in Jackie's story.
Women's Health Centres may have felt like
they were a lone voice for many years
around lesbian health -- working together
we can create much a stronger voice.
Stevie Clayton, CEO ACON.
MUMS SAY THANKS
To New Mardi Gras, Julian, Scott and the
parade volunteers, thank you for giving us
the experience of a lifetime and a night to
remember forever! Since June last year
when the Play School media began, our
family has been reassured and
acknowledged by many people from our
community. The messages of support have
made a huge difference to us and helped
turn an overwhelming and potentially
negative experience into a very positive and
validating one. As the lesbian 'Play School'
family we were given the honour of leading
the parade which was a total BUZZ! More
importantly, it was hugely supportive of
our efforts to create a safe and supportive
environment for our daughter and other
children with lesbian and gay parents,
and to help them to grow up into
confident and respectful adults. Brenna's
extended family -- her donor and his
partner, her grandparents, aunt and uncle
and cousins -- turned up to proudly watch
us celebrate our family's right to exist and
flourish. As we made our way up Oxford
Street with smiles plastered onto our
faces and thousands cheering us on we
felt like the perfect family. Yeah we have
our moments like all families, and Brenna
still has to tidy her room, but to receive
that kind of validation and support from
our community is truly remarkable and
for that support, we are grateful.
Jackie and Vicki, via email.
I just wanted to express my thanks and
congratulations to the ownership of Arrow's
Sauna for the lesbian event held there
during Mardi Gras. It goes without saying
but thanks also to the brave and fabulous
women who attended. I spent some time
speaking to the lovely owner and he is
interested in holding a lesbian night once a
month. He demonstrated a comforting
respect for women and is very keen to
ensure that lesbians are at ease in the space,
for which I think he is to be commended. I
was extremely nervous at first, but ended up
having a fantastic night -- helped out by 2
particularly delicious gals willing and able
to instruct this sauna virgin (you know who
you are!). I would encourage women to
look out for the next event -- give it a try.
You can watch or participate, or just hang
out downstairs in a sex free space.
I think it is important for lesbians to support
events like this, where we challenge our
boundaries and take in all the possibilities
of the moment.
It was enormously liberating, and very very
sexy. The more gals the better I say!
Kelly, via email.
At the Mardi Gras Great Debate about the
representation of gays and lesbians on TV,
speaker Phil Scott is reported to have said,
and I roughly quote: "On seeing the pilot
for The Way We Were, Courtney Gibson,
ABC TV Head of Arts and Entertainment,
said that Mark Trevorrow was 'too gay'". I
know it was a comedy debate, but this is
serious. I deplore homophobia in the media
and the wider community and have, as an
SBS commissioning editor and ABC
executive, actively sought to foster deeper
understanding of and engagement with
issues facing gay, lesbian and transgender
Australians and their families on a wide
variety of factual and entertainment
programs. And I have always insisted on
strong and non-tokenistic representation of
gay guests and presenters on the shows for
which I am editorially responsible. So I am
extremely upset and incredibly pissed off
about Phil Scott's very damaging
accusation and I wish for your readers to
know it's completely untrue.
Courtney Gibson, Head of Arts and
Entertainment ABC TV.
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