Senate passes motion on universal rights for LGBTI people
Senators Louise Pratt and Claire Moore called on the Australian Government to take all available steps to support the universal decriminalisation of homosexuality, in accordance with the Universal Declaration of Human rights.
Speaking in the senate last night, Moore and Pratt drew attention to the fact that today 81 countries worldwide have legislation that criminalises consensual same-sex activities between adults and of those countries over half were members of the Commonwealth. Of the Commonwealth nations, 43 out 53 nations legislate against same-sex people.
The pair called for a motion to support universal human rights for LGBTI people.
The motion which successfully passed through the Senate also calls for the government to support and defend the human rights of LGBTI people around the world, and support a Commonwealth charter which defends LGBTI rights in accordance with international law in all Commonwealth countries.
The Senate also agreed to Pratt and Moore’s call for the Attorney General to refer to Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights a future inquiry on issues affecting the human rights of LGBTI people.
The NSW Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby have welcomed the passage of the motion through the Senate.
“Whilst we note the call for a Parliamentary inquiry, we call for continued immediate bi-lateral action to oppose regressive laws that lead to the imprisonment and dehumanisation of lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex people, including through legitimating acts of discrimination and violence,” said Jed Horner from the NSW GLRL.
“Given the impact of these laws on mental health and HIV, as well as in fuelling sexual violence, we also call for Australia to use its influence through other forums, such as the World Health Organization Executive Board, which we currently chair."