Donation welcomed for marriage equality
Australian Marriage Equality has welcomed a pledge by Modern Family actor Jesse Tyler Ferguson to donate $10,000 to support the fight for marriage equality in Australia.
The pledge was made hot on the heels of the announcement the Modern Family crew would be filming a special episode in Australia.
Ferguson wrote on his Tie The Knot website he and his husband Justin Mikita had visited Australia last November and “fallen in love” with the place.
He said he was making the donation in light of the High Court’s decision to overturn the ACT’s same-sex marriage laws, and his empathy for those couples who had married, and then had their marriages annulled.
“Having been through a similar situation with Proposition 8 here in California, we could really empathize with the frustration and sadness of those who supported and fought for marriage equality,” Ferguson wrote.
“Newlyweds ourselves, Justin and I kept thinking how devastated we would have been if suddenly we were no longer recognized as a legal couple.”
Ferguson and Mikita set up the Tie The Knot foundation last year and managed to raise $50,000 for America’s Human Rights Campaign from a single line of bow ties.
“Tie The Knot has always focused its efforts on marriage equality in the United States, but there is no doubt in my mind that this is a great opportunity to bring attention to the journey toward marriage equality that Australia is currently embarking on,” Ferguson wrote.
“We have great faith in their strength and perseverance…. so much so I am personally pledging $10,000 toward the marriage equality efforts in Australia.”
Australian Marriage Equality national convenor Rodney Croome said the donation demonstrated Ferguson’s “generosity and commitment”.
"Jesse's concern for marriage equality in Australia is shared by many people overseas who want to see us catch up with our closest friends and allies like the US, Britain, Canada and New Zealand," Croome said.
"I'd like to see Jesse's donation spent on community education campaigns and on mobilising grassroots support in key electorates.
"We need to ensure that all modern families have their voices heard."
Ferguson said he and Mikita had adopted the owl as a logo for the Tie The Knot foundation, because it signifies “patience through the long, hard journey of gaining equality.”
"This fight isn’t a quick one in the United States, and it won’t be in Australia either,” he wrote.
“But together we can make a difference!”