Thursday, 5 July 2007

ALP pledges state-based relationship recognition

The Labor party is committed to equality for gay men, lesbians, and same sex couples and, if elected, will remove provisions which discriminate on the basis of sexuality.

That means ending discrimination in the areas of taxation, superannuation, social security benefits, the Medicare Safety Net, immigration, veteran's entitlements and all other areas (aside from the Marriage Act). All practical, day-to-day discrimination faced by the gay and lesbian communities will be removed from our laws.

At the party's National Conference in May, Labor formally committed to a nationally consistent system of state-based relationship recognition. The schemes will cover a range of non-marital relationships including same-sex relationships, de facto heterosexual relationships and certain carer relationships.

These schemes would simply act as a means by which any de facto couple could register their relationship for the purposes of recognition by government.

Such schemes are not civil unions or gay marriage. There is no ceremony involved and they would not come under the marriage poser in the Constitution, nor affect the definition of marriage in the Marriage Act 1961 as "a voluntary union entered into by a man and a woman to the exclusion of all others, for life".

Source: ALP

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