Loddon Campaspe Multicultural Services
Public Statement in Support of Marriage Equality
4th September 2017
Loddon Campaspe Multicultural Services (LCMS) supports marriage equality. We believe that marriage equality is a human rights issue and that it is a necessary step in ensuring all Australians are equal before the law. As an organisation that champions diversity and works from a strong human rights framework, we believe it is important for us to publicly support marriage equality.
Gender and sexual diversity is found amongst people of all faith and cultural backgrounds. People who are from a culturally diverse background and are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or intersex (LBGTI) can experience complex and multi-levelled discrimination. Culturally diverse LGBTI people are at particular risk of psychological distress and isolation during the marriage equality debate.
As the peak multicultural body in our region and as an organisation run by and for multicultural communities, LCMS is proud to support culturally diverse LGBTI people and to assure them that they are welcome and belong in our community. LCMS urges culturally diverse LGBTI people who may be feeling isolated or distressed at this time to contact us and seek support.
LCMS Executive Officer, Kate McInnes, said, “The more we value and celebrate diversity the stronger our community will become. Personally, I do support marriage equality and look forward to same sex marriage being passed into law. This will allow us to move forward and become a more inclusive community, where culturally diverse LGBTI people feel a greater sense of belonging and acceptance.”
LCMS Chairman, Abhishek Awasthi, said, “Personally as well as an organisation we recognise the value of a number of social issues from cultural diversity to gender diversity and marriage equality, as these issues are fundamental to Australian values such as fairness and respect for the freedom and dignity of the individual. I wholeheartedly support marriage equality and believe that the current anti-discrimination laws should be maintained and enforced to ensure that businesses or service providers cannot withhold goods or services from clients due to their gender or sexual orientation. I want to live in an Australia where we have laws that uphold everyone’s human rights, including LGBTI people’s right to marriage.”
LCMS commends Bendigo’s State and Federal representatives Maree Edwards MP, Jacinta Allen MP and Lisa Chesters MP, for publicly supporting marriage equality and campaigning on this issue.
LCMS calls on other multicultural organisations around Australia to stand up for culturally diverse LGBTI people by publicly supporting marriage equality.