Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Pride in Law Launch 17 November

Amidst the mixture of fear and elation about whether the Yes vote will win, along comes a ray of light to remind us that change is possible, and that hope is worthwhile.

On 17 November Australia's first LGBTIQ lawyers networking group is being launched- Pride in Law - in Brisbane. The brainchild of lawyer Dean Jones, Pride in Law is designed to allow LGBTIQ lawyers to network with each other. Too often LGBTIQ lawyers are treated or feel as though they are different because of our sexuality. While the law makes plain that there should not be discrimination in employment because of sexuality, having to come out at work can either be an accepting and welcoming process, or horribly confronting.

The launch will be in Brisbane's HUGE Banco Court- a court used often for ceremonies, and capable of holding a large crowd.

The principal speaker will be retired District Court judge Milton Griffin QC.

I will also be speaking. It is hard to believe that it is almost 20 years since I first starting writing about issues concerning LGBTIQ people for Brisbane's then paper Brother/Sister, and then following its demise, writing for almost 15 years for Qnews. I am proud to be a founding member.

Pride in Law is aimed at practising lawyers- whether in private practice (including the private bar), in government or academia, or aspiring lawyers.

The marriage survey has been a battering and bruising experience. At times I have felt quite depressed about the horrible attacks on gays, lesbians and trans people- for example that we will corrupt children, including the claim equating gays with paedophiles. Or the slippery slope argument- that allowing gay and lesbians to vote will lead to polygamy or bestiality. We do not know currently whether the Yes vote will win. While we have our fingers crossed, too few young people have voted- so it may still turn out badly.

Even if the No vote triumph, life will go on, and LGBTIQ lawyers will continue to need and be able to give support to others. An organisation like Pride in Law is vital, positive, uplifting, and can change lives for the better.

If you can attend, please make sure you go.

Details of the launch event are here.

Please make sure you visit the Pride in Law Facebook page- and like it!

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