The Green party in Tasmania has announced it intends to to re-introduce same-sex marriage legislation originally tabled in 2005, despite opposition from both major political parties.
“If we are fair dinkum about removing discrimination we should give all Tasmanians access to the fundamental institutions of our society, including marriage,” said Greens Deputy Leader Nick McKim.
“There is no such thing as ‘mostly equal’, and until legislators provide same-sex couples with access to all civil institutions we will continue to discriminate against large numbers of people who deserve much better.”
Tasmanian Gay and Lesbian Rights Group spokesperson Rodney Croome said that marriage is an important way to affirm the love and commitment in relationships, and should not exclude same-sex couples.
“Same-sex couples wish to marry for all the same reasons as heterosexual couples, and they should have that choice”, Mr Croome said.
“It’s painful for many same-sex couples to see their counterparts in places like California taking solemn legal vows of life-long commitment while knowing they cannot do the same in their own country.”
The Australian government has repeatedly refused to legalise same sex marriage, a policy supported by the main opposition parties.
State governments have the power to enact same-sex marriage laws.
The Tasmanian Greens will table legislation when the House of Assembly resumes on July 1st.