Rachel Evans gave this speech to a rally for marriage equality in Sydney on May 31. She is a member of Community Action Against Homophobia (CAAH) and the Socialist Alliance. *** We are on the cusp of a victory. A victory of ordinary people against prejudice and bigotry. We are on the edge of winning this battle for marriage equality — when the likes of Prime Minister Tony Abbott and conservative journalists Alan Jones and Andrew Bolt coming out positively for our love rights, we know we are close.
There was a time when an Australian Council of Trade Union congress would be covered by a media pack the size of the parliamentary press gallery. But with private sector union membership languishing at just 12% of the workforce, these days are long gone. Events during the recently held May triennial congress highlighted some of the reasons for organised labour’s demise. During a week in which the issue of gay marriage was being canvassed in the national parliament, the congress was silent on the matter, largely due to the opposition of ACTU senior vice-president Joe de Bruyn.