City News

Hundreds protest at Town Hall for LGBTI rights

Hundreds campaigned for better LGBTI rights in NSW Parliament. Photo: Facebook/Community Action for Rainbow Rights.

By DANIEL LO SURDO

Hundreds campaigned at Town Hall yesterday to take a stand for LGBTI rights and protest Premier Dominic Perrottet’s parliamentary agenda. 

The protest was organised by Community Action for Rainbow Rights and sought to draw attention to the proposed bills and legislation that will “erode [the] rights” of the LGBTI community. 

Greens’ Lord Mayoral candidate for City of Sydney Council Sylvie Ellsmore believed that parliament was not representative of the wider NSW community. 

“Every time we have another older white guy elected from the religious right elected to a position of authority, it reminds us how far we’ve got to go to make our parliaments and our councils look like us and stand for our values,” Ms Ellsmore said at the protest.

“We are not bigots, and we are going to fight to make sure you don’t change the anti-discrimination laws.” 

Kill Bill

In September, City Hub reported an anti-transgender education bill proposed by One Nation’s Mark Latham, which was endorsed by NSW Parliament and heavily condemned by the trans and gender diverse community. 

Mr Latham’s Education Legislation Amendment (Parental Rights) Bill 2020 would ban the teaching of gender fluidity in NSW, while teachers, counsellors and other school staff would be prevented from affirming a student as transgender without seeking advice from their parents or guardian first. 

Trans students would also be removed of their right to seek confidential support from within their school environment and would require all parents of other children to be notified if a student in their child’s year is transitioning. 

The bill was endorsed by the NSW Parliament’s Education Committee, which is chaired by Mr Latham. 

“We’re going to fight to say that someone like Mark Latham leading the charge in government, backed by a conservative element in the Liberal Party, that weirdo should not be making decisions and writing laws for any of the rest of us,” Ms Ellsmore said. 

The object of the bill, as introduced in parliament, is to amend the Education Act 1990 and to clarify that “parents and not schools are primarily responsible for the development and formation of their children in relation to … an understanding of personal identity, including in relation to gender and sexuality”. It also calls on the teaching of core values to be “strictly non-ideological” and should not be advocating or promoting “dogmatic or polemical ideology” that may be “inconsistent” with the values of parents. 

Protestors gathered at Town Hall from noon and marched to State Parliament to protest throughout the streets of the CBD. 

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