Home' LOTL : Nov 11 Contents Pride of the west
WA’s annual Pride Month kicked off in style with 4500
attendees at its opening carnival, Fairday.
The community gathered at Russell Square for what
organisers call its community day to enjoy stalls, kids’
area and two stages of entertainment including the
dog show, hosted by drag queen Swish Eveready.
“It’s a family-orientated day and we have it during
the day to allow families to attend,” said Pride WA
spokesperson Alice Newport-Holden.
Fairday is usually held on the Sunday of WA’s
Queens’s birthday long weekend, but this year the
state government moved the public holiday a few
weeks later when Queen Elizabeth will visit for the
Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.
“Obviously a lot of bars and clubs benefit from Fairday
so that’s another reason to have it on the Saturday. It
was just as successful,” said Alice Newport-Holden.
As a result of the date shift, the festival will run for an
additional few weeks, concluding with the Parade on
“I love the fact that it’s turning into a season,
rather than Pride Month. It seems to be working
well,” she said.
6 Lesbians On The Loose Magazine • lotl.com
The Victorian ALP has a message for the Prime Minister
on her anti-gay marriage stance: build a bridge, and “get
over it”. The urgency resolution to legalise same-sex
couple unions was almost unanimous at the recent state
conference, reiterating a position it took in 2009. Textile
union secretary Michele O’Neil told the state party’s 606
delegates that the gay marriage debate was “about choice,
about fairness and about rights”. She said the party should
just “get over it” and change the law. South Australia’s
outgoing premier Mike Rann also called for full marriage
equality, calling the status quo “discrimination” and civil
unions a “halfway house”. Rann, who has never publicly
supported gay marriage, also said: “It is, quite simply,
unfair to prevent same-sex couples from having their
relationship. What are we so afraid of? Why is this next
step so threatening?” South Australian Liberal Party
Leader, Isobel Redmond, has reiterated her support
for marriage equality. NSW is now the only state ALP
branch to not publicly support gay marriage.
A 60-strong group of marriag e equality deleg ates
met with MPs in Canberra recently, but some left
feeling uncer tain of law reform in the near future.
The deleg ation, organised by Australian Marriag e
Equality and including gay and straight members,
had around 40 meeting s with various state MPs from
all parties in an opportunity to tell their p ersonal
stories, and why equality was impor tant to them.
But gay lobbyist Serena Ryan, also co-host of JOY
94.9’s current affairs show Salt and Pepper, said many
MPs were ver y cautious in their supp ort.
“ When we met with [Victorian MP] Rob
Mitchell, he said ‘I am in principle in suppor t of
marriage for same-sex couples but I won’t fall on my
sword for it or g o ag ainst the party’.”
She said Mitchell blamed the current political
instability at federal le vel.
“R ob Mitchell said if there wasn’t a minority
government it [Marriag e Equality Bill] would have
been a no brainer, it would have gone through ver y
easily,” she said.
She said a meeting with Gre ens MP Adam Bandt’s
chief of staff reaffirmed their party’s commitment to
reintroduce Senator Sarah Hanson Young ’s Marriag e
Equality Bill, previously defeated, but Ryan said the
party was “cag ey ” about the timing .
“ They were talking around the tenuousness of a
minority government,” she said.
Pressure is mounting on the federal ALP to
chang e their policy on the issue at the ALP national
conference in De cember, but Ryan said despite
widespread public support from state branches,
deleg ates were less than positive.
“People were saying , I’m tire d, I’ve been telling my
stor y all day, and there’s still no sense that when we g o
to the ALP conference that a conscience vote will be
enough,” she said.
“At the end of the day you’re trawling the corridors
and knocking on doors and saying ‘hey, I’m a
homosexual and I want to g et married.’
“It was cer tainly a dynamic day, but I don’t think
we are still any closer.”
Any support for reform from Coalition MPs may
be nullified after leader Tony Abbot declared he
would not allow a conscience vote on the issue.
Abbott’s spokesperson said: “ The Coalition’s
policy is that marriag e is between a man and a
“ We don’t have conscience votes on matters
Letters / Local / Global / Gossip
LMPs cagey on
STATES TO JULIA: “GET OVER IT”
PHOTOS COURTESY OF OUT IN PERTH
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