The Victorian Greens will tonight launch a Rainbow State Action Plan that would see greater protections for LGBTIQA+ communities enshrined in law.
It would also see increased funding for community-led LGBTIQA+ services so they could continue to provide vital support for LGBTIQA+ people across the state.
The Rainbow State Action Plan forms part of the Greens’ commitment to LGBTIQA+ communities ahead of the State Election.
As part of the plan the Greens would introduce an equality bill for Victoria that would:
- Strengthen the Equal Opportunity Act. This would prevent all faith-based schools and organisations from discriminating against LGBTIQA+ students, staff and services users.
- Give the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission stronger powers. This would include stronger investigatory powers and enforceable determinations.
- Expand anti-vilification laws. This would protect LGBTIQA+ people and support victims of hate crimes, including by making vilification and public harassment a crime and legislating to make violence motivated by hate a specific criminal offence.
- Ban deferrable medical interventions on intersex children. The bill would also restrict all sex characteristic altering medical treatment on intersex people without personal consent or oversight from an independent expert panel.
- Enshrine the LGBTIQ+ Communities Commissioner and the LGBTIQ+ Taskforce in legislation.
The Greens would also launch a $200 million dollar Rainbow State Fund for LGBTIQA+ community-led organisations.
This would ensure funding for vital LGBTIQA+ services in areas such as mental health, youth services, homelessness and sexual health.
It would also go towards investing in additional clinical services for trans, gender diverse and non-binary Victorians.
Victorian Greens LGBTIQA+ spokesperson, Sam Hibbins, said that while important strides had been made to protect Victoria’s queer communities, many still faced discrimination and violence without adequate legal protection.
He added that by providing more funding for community-leg organisations, they could continue to carry out their vital and life-saving work with LGBTIQA+ people.
The Greens hope to increase their representation in the November State Election so that they can push to make this a priority in the next term of Parliament.
Quotes attributable to Victorian Greens LGBTIQA+ spokesperson, Sam Hibbins MP:
“We should all feel safe and have equal opportunities in life, no matter our sexuality, gender identity or sex characteristics.
“Yet here in Victoria lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, queer and asexual people continue to face discrimination across multiple areas of their lives.
“In recent years the Greens have proudly helped push to protect students and teachers at faith-based schools, for birth certificate reform and for an end to so-called conversion practices. But we know there’s much more that needs to be done.
“Law reform and funding for LGBTIQA+ community-led organisations will be essential to ensuring Victoria truly becomes the Rainbow State.
“This November we’ll be making sure LGBTIQA+ rights are placed squarely on the agenda for the next term of Parliament.”