Cobaw Community Health (Cobaw) is committed to supporting the health and wellbeing of everyone in the community. We actively advocate for equality and against discrimination, and have been leaders in supporting the health and wellbeing of the local Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Queer (LGBTIQ) community.
Despite substantial social reform and legislative change, we know that as a result of ongoing discrimination and exclusion, the LGBTIQ community are over represented in mental health data. Same sex attracted Australians are up to 14 times more likely to attempt suicide than their heterosexual peers. Given that we know there is a causal link between the effects of discrimination and mental health and wellbeing, it is critical that we support initiatives and governmental responses that promote equality for all people.
Cobaw believes that the rights and liberties of all individuals are absolute. We also hold firm the fact that equality before the law is a fundamental human right and not a matter of public opinion.
For these reasons Cobaw supports marriage equality and opposes any dilution to the Anti-Discrimination Act that involves privileged non-compliance for specific groups.
Cobaw echoes the clearly expressed concerns of LGBTIQ people and other stakeholder groups that a plebiscite would have created a divisive issue for the Australian community and harmful for a group of people who already suffer the effects of homophobia, discrimination and abuse.
Cobaw supports marriage equality being delivered through the Australian Parliament.