A bill legalising same-sex adoption passed the lower house of NSW parliament on September 2. Western Australia and the Australian Capital Territory already have laws supporting same-sex adoption.
Put to a conscience vote, the bill passed with 46 votes in favour and 44 against. Labor Premier Kristina Keneally supported the bill, as did Liberal leader Barry O’Farrell.
Nationals leader Andrew Stoner voted against.
On August 31, Christian Democratic Party leader Fred Nile organised a rally against the bill. According to his press release, 300 people attended.
The bill must still pass the upper house and is subject to an amendment allowing religious adoption agencies to discriminate against same-sex couples. Sydney independent MP Clover Moore re-tabled the bill after first proposing the change 10 years ago.
Sydney’s Community Action Against Homophobia (CAAH) welcomed the changes, but called on people to continue to rally for full equality — with no exceptions.
CAAH co-convener Cat Rose said: “It is great to see a couple of small but important victories over the last week, with the lower house giving us hope that adoption equality will soon exist in NSW and Tasmania moving to recognise same-sex unions.
“It’s obvious that politicians are under pressure, but too many of them still insist on denying us full equality. We call on people to come out and protest for full marriage equality on November 27.”