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Thursday, 12 August 2004
Page: 26571


Senator GREIG (5:29 PM) —I move Democrat amendment (1) on sheet 4394:

(1) Schedule 1, page 3 (after line 8), after item 1, insert:

1BA After subsection 5(1)

Insert:

(1A) It is not intended by this Act that, in relation to any Commonwealth law, the definition of marriage in subsection (1) should be taken to mean or imply that a relationship between two people of the same sex who are not married to each other should have other than the same status as an equivalent de facto relationship between a man and a woman.

This final Democrat amendment is word for word an amendment moved by Ms Tanya Plibersek in the House of Representatives. It goes to the heart of saying that, if this amendment is passed:

It is not intended by this Act that, in relation to any Commonwealth law, the definition of marriage in subsection (1) should be taken to mean or imply that a relationship between two people of the same sex who are not married to each other should have other than the same status as an equivalent de facto relationship between a man and a woman.

In other words, this amendment, moved by Labor in the House of Representatives to represent its aspirations for lesbian and gay couples, is now moved by me—not by them—here in the Senate chamber. It is another litmus test for Labor. I call on Labor to demonstrate its professed commitment to this, to acknowledge the humanity and dignity of lesbian and gay people in same-sex relationships and to support the amendment to do this—originally your amendment—here in the committee now.


The TEMPORARY CHAIRMAN (Senator Ferguson)—Order! The time for debating the bill has expired. I put the question that Senator Greig's amendment (1) on sheet 4394 be agreed to.