same-sex marriage

Haiti’s Senate has passed a bill that makes same sex marriage a crime and bans public displays of support for LGBTI rights. The bill — which would affect Haitian nationals and foreigners — will now go to the Chamber of Deputies, although a date for a vote has not been set.

Haitian law already defines marriage as being between a man and woman. But this bill seeks to expressly criminalise same sex marriage, with “parties, co-parties, and accomplices” to a same-sex marriage  — meaning even those who simply attend — facing potential jail terms of up to three years and an $8000 fine.

With what appears a landslide win amid a high turnout, all indications are Ireland has voted "yes" to marriage equality in a referendum on legalising same-sex marriages. This is the first time marriage equality has been put to a popular vote anywhere in the world, and makes Ireland the 21st nation to legalise same-sex marriages.

Equal marriage rallies were held on November 23 in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Perth.
 
About 500 people braved wet weather to march for  marriage equality in Melbourne. Speakers included  United Firefighters national secretary Peter Marshall. He said:  "How does a government have the right to say that your love is  not equal? This leads to less workplace rights than heterosexuals.  Unions do not like discrimination. You are supported, you will win this."

The same-sex marriage bill passed in the Australian Capital Territory on October 22 was the most important victory of the equal marriage rights campaign so far. It is the first time queer people have had the right to marry in Australia and follows a seven-year campaign in the ACT, and a nine-year struggle nationwide.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott is likely to do everything in his power to overturn the legislation. The federal government will be taking it to the High Court next month.

This is a speech by Peter Boyle, the Socialist Alliance candidate for Sydney, at a rally for equal marriage rights in Sydney on May 25.

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Let me begin by acknowledging that we are gathering here today on stolen Aboriginal land, the land of the Gadigal people that was never ceded but taken by force from its Indigenous owners.

We pay our respects to elders and warriors — past and present — who have battled for survival and justice for against tremendous odds.

The fight against homophobia is arguably the civil rights issue of our times. It is increasingly unacceptable that, in 2013, society continues to discriminate against people based on their sexuality.

This is most obviously demonstrated by the continued refusal to grant equal marriage rights to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LBGTI) people.

About 600 people rallied for marriage equality in Melbourne on November 24. Other rallies took part around Australia.

Jason Ball, the first openly queer AFL player, was a guest speaker at the event.

"I figured I was gay when I was 16 years old," he said. "I knew that I would be treated differently. I was terrified I would disappoint my family. It was no surprise to me that queer and transgender youth are six times [more] likely to suffer depression or contemplate suicide. I wanted to be myself.

Churchgoers all over Sydney heard official statements from their denominations on June 17 with a firm and united message: “Marriage is only for heterosexual couples.”

I needed to see this for myself, so I and four gay Christian friends summoned our courage and attended the evening service at St Andrew's Cathedral.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard said marriage equality was "inevitable" when she met with three same-sex couples on February 21 during a dinner organised by GetUp! The admission came despite her own opposition to equal marriage.

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