Archive for Within Australia

Celebrate Bi Day 2017 – 23rd September

// September 18th, 2017 // No Comments » // Within Australia, Within Victoria

Equality Roadshow

September is bi-visibility month and the 23rd of September, the annual Bi-Pride Day.

Check out the two events being held jointly by YGender and the Bisexual Alliance Victoria in Carlton.

Real fears of hateful rhetoric in marriage survey

// August 15th, 2017 // No Comments » // Media discussion, Relationships, Within Australia, Within Victoria

The federal government’s proposed marriage equality postal survey heads to the High Court of Australia and behind the scenes planning continues and debate in the community has commenced. we hold real concerns that some of the debate threatens to expose vulnerable same-sex attracted and gender diverse people to prejudice and hatred.

In the La Trobe Valley, AVP Traralgon representative, Rob Mauger, fears the upcoming same-sex marriage postal ballot could expose the LGBTI community to hateful behaviour.

“I’m 63, and I’ve heard everything everyone has said.. that my love is so dangerous it will destroy the fabric of Australian society,” Mr Mauger told the La Trobe Valley Express.

“How does anyone think being told that feels?” Amid hearing ongoing discrimination that “makes you want to shrink as though you have no place”, Mr Mauger found satisfaction in the recent Pride Cup and wanted to thank the AFL community in the Latrobe Valley

Read the full discussion here: http://www.latrobevalleyexpress.com.au/story/4853181/fears-marriage-ballot-could-divide/

Elite football should embrace sexual equality with the same enthusiasm it supports indigenous talent – Kevin Sheedy

// May 18th, 2017 // No Comments » // Media discussion, Sport, Within Australia, Within Victoria

Former-Essendon-coach-Kevin-Sheedy-Photo-Getty-Images.jpg

Marking the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHOT) on 17th May 2017, AFL coaching legend Kevin Sheedy said he wanted the football world to embrace sexual equality with the same enthusiasm with which it has supported indigenous talent at the elite level of the game.

Sheedy joined a panel alongside Matt Hall, football’s first openly gay footballer ( @matthall1972 ), who in 1998 was refused registration in the Victorian Amateur Football Association because of his HIV-positive status, a ruling he fought and beat in the courts, together with former Olympian and politician Nova Peris and Collingwood AFLW player Penny Cula-Reid.

Sheedy also praised the AFL for its progressive stance on social issues, but spoke about the conservatism of society at large inhibiting a change in attitudes.

Read The Age journalist Rohan Connolly’s article in full here http://www.theage.com.au/afl/afl-news/kevin-sheedy-calls-on-football-to-embrace-sexual-equality-20170518-gw7hyh.html

SURVEY – Perceptions of police, crime reporting and feelings of safety

// May 6th, 2017 // No Comments » // Research, Within Australia, Within Victoria

The Victorian Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby (VGLRL) asked festival goers at the 2017 Midsumma and Chill-Out festivals to complete a community survey with part of the survey focusing on perceptions and experiences of Victoria Police. They’ve now put this survey online and would love to get a good response from the community.

VGLRL are interested in hearing from you about your perceptions of the police, reporting of crimes and how safe you feel.
We at the AVP urge you to help the VGLRL better serve our community by completing their short survey so we all can understand what issues are important to you.

As one of the key rights-focused lobby groups in Victoria, alongside TGV, the VGLRL will use this information to proactively champion LGBTI rights, concerns and influence the way the police work with our community.

The 5 minutes you spend visiting https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/VGLRL2017 will be some of the most important minutes you ever contribute to community!

Seeking support

// January 23rd, 2017 // No Comments » // Within Australia, Within Victoria

If you or anyone you know needs help:

Qlife 3pm-midnight 1800 184 527

Lifeline on 13 11 14

Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800

MensLine Australia on 1300 789 978

Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467

Beyond Blue on 1300 22 46 36

Headspace on 1800 650 89

If you’re in danger, call police 000.

Find the location, name & contact number of your local GLLO (Police LGBTI liaison officer via our VicAVP site http://antiviolence.info/violence-map/

When safe, make a violence report to the AVP http://antiviolence.info/report-violence/

Leadership, personal experience and protecting Safe Schools – Harriet Shing MLC

// November 28th, 2016 // No Comments » // Media discussion, Within Australia, Within Victoria

Grace

We share with you a wonderful speech by Harriet Shing MLC in the Legislative Council at the Parliament of Victoria (October 26, 2016) in support of the Safe Schools program as the first out LGBT member of state parliament responding to a motion to remove the Safe Schools program from schools.

Harriet says “(there have been) other women who have been in this Parliament and other women who are in public office who, like people throughout society, have gone their entire lives hiding themselves from the world, hiding themselves from the reflections that they see in the mirror, living lives which may seem to put a somewhat tolerable skin on it on one level but which do not truly reflect who they are on another.

She uses her personal experience to unpack what she sees and that which we agree is enormously challenging for parents to do when their children come out as same sex attracted or gender diverse, that is to look their child in the eye, hear them out and say to them that they love them anyway — that they love them unconditionally.

“That is not always the case”, Ms Shing told Parliament, “It is also not always the case that children are accepting of the other, that children can understand the importance of being accepting and respectful, that children understand the importance of the fact that sex, gender, sexuality, race, ethnicity and religion — personal characteristics, the essence of who somebody is — are not and should not ever be considered to be causes of derision or contempt or isolation or exclusion or bullying”.

She then unpacks the issues surrounding discrimination of LGBTI children, looks at the guidance and support the Safe Schools program provides these children and those around them and then discusses her own personal experience of being accepted for who she is by a vast majority of people she deals with in her role as an MP yet “having said that, there are a number who do not (accept my sexuality)”.

Ms Shing says “that number is small, but it is very, very vocal, and that number is prone to being vicious on occasion. That number is prone to telling me that I am an abomination, that I am a disgrace and that I should be ashamed, and so in standing here today I refuse to be an abomination, I refuse to be a disgrace and I refuse to be ashamed. But in doing that I note that it has got to be happening to kids in secondary school because if it is happening to me as an elected member of Parliament, if it happens to me in my workplace and it happens to me out in the broader community, then it has got to be happening in our playgrounds and it has got to be happening at our bus stops, and I know it is happening in our workplaces”.

The Anti-Violence Project takes the view that Safe Schools is much needed program addressing homophobic harassment and bullying in schools however a social policy vacuum exists outside the school gate where prejudice and homophobia (including trans/bi-phobia) are passed from generation to generation through families. Schools must be safe places for students; homes, streets and society must be safe places for all same sex attracted and gender diverse people. As a =n out member of parliament and an Anbassador for the Safe Schools Program, Harriet Shing shines a light on the work needed to shift our society on both sides of the school gate.

Read the complete Harriet Shing speech in support of the Safe Schools program here:
http://hansard.parliament.vic.gov.au/isysquery/c2cfa5c3-e733-4088-8360-adac11d64e34/2/doc/
or via her personal website here:
http://www.harrietshing.com.au/news/you-are-okay-exactly-as-you-are-harriet-speaks-out-in-parliament-about-bullying-having-respect-for-all-people-and-safe-schools/3/

Loss of a young life is a tragedy and national disgrace

// November 25th, 2016 // No Comments » // Media discussion, Within Australia

(trigger warning; homophobia & suicide)

Tyrone Unsworth’s suicide is a tragic loss of a child’s life due to years of homophobic bullying and insults at school.

We believe society must change inside AND outside the school gate to prevent this tragedy unfolding in many families’ lives – there’s a social policy vacuum than must be filled and a community of unfunded organisations and volunteers working in this space who need funding and support.

We know that Tyrone’s grieving family didn’t raise what was happening to Tyrone in the school yard with the school.

We also believe that the Safe Schools program could have been a game changer here, removing the silence around homophobia and violence in schools and outside the school gate in community, opening up communications and discussion to support Tyrone and his family.

Social policy action by the Commonwealth and Queensland governments could have started the work needed to change how society is ingrained with homophobia and prejudice outside the school gate.

And Tyrone and his family may have been strengthened and enabled to take the bullying up with his school well before he was pushed towards suicide.

The loss of a young 13 year old life to homophobic bullying and harassment at school is both a tragedy and a national disgrace.

Further reading:
http://www.kidspot.com.au/parenting/real-life/in-the-news/brisbane-year-7-student-takes-own-life-after-being-bullied-for-sexuality

Supports:
Lifeline Australia – 13 11 14 – Crisis Support and Suicide Prevention
QLife – 1800 184 527 – 3pm to midnight – Australia’s first nationally-oriented counselling and referral service for people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, and/or intersex (LGBTI)

Hate crimes up in the UK post-Brexit. Will the Oz marriage plebiscite experience replicate this?

// October 10th, 2016 // No Comments » // International, Within Australia

Hate crimes against religion, ethnic minorities and now sexuality have all risen in the UK since the Brexit vote in June. The Anti-Violence Project asks will the Australian experience during and after the proposed marriage equality plebiscite be the same?

According to The Guardian, Galop, an LGBT anti-violence charity in the United Kingdom, has given support to around 187 LGBT people who have suffered from the hate crimes in the last few months since the Brexit vote was taken.

Is the rise in homophobic hate crime seen in the UK a disturbing trend that will seen when the far-right conservative values are given a voice larger than their place in a modern egalitarian society? Could this trend in the UK be a forerunner of events in Australia if the marriage plebiscite proceeds?

Check out the full Guardian article here:
http://attitude.co.uk/homophobic-attacks-rose-147-in-three-months-after-brexit-vote/

Premier Daniel Andrews full apology for old laws criminalising homosexual behaviour

// May 24th, 2016 // No Comments » // AVP news, Elders past and present, Media discussion, Within Australia, Within Victoria

“For a future that is strong and fair and just!” – Hon Daniel Andrews, Premier of Victoria, May 24, 2016.

“Challenging some of the fundamental imbalances that today still stop gay men from reporting violence & harassment!” – Greg Adkins JP, executive director, Anti-Violence Project of Victoria Inc.

“(The) Apology is a powerful symbolic act to repair the harm caused by unjust laws & affirm the value of sexual difference” – Anna Brown, director Advocacy & Strategic Litigation, Human Rights Law Centre