Australian Legislation of Same Sex Parents

All around the world, at least in most developed countries we are slowly seeing attitudes changing towards the issue of same sex parents.  However although attitudes are obviously important, it is important that legislation is updated too in order to afford the same rights as heterosexual couples.

The current Issue: Same-sex parents aren’t properly recognised in Australian Law.

Currently the Federal Government does not recognise the existence of same-sex families. And only some states recognise same-sex families. Some states allow same-sex couples to create families using reproductive technologies or adoption, others don’t.

For example, in Victoria, lesbians must be considered ‘medically infertile’ to use Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) services. There is no such requirement for heterosexual couples. Western Australia, in comparison, allows access to these technologies to lesbians and single women. Some states also recognise the non-biological parent on the birth certificate of any child conceived using ART. This gives only some children born in some states the legal recognition of their two parents.

Of course in some countries the situation is much worse for couple even when they’re using the internet they have to be careful.  In Turkey for example many of the support groups and forums are blocked and banned by the countries ISP by order of the government.  Most are forced to use proxies and VPNs in order to safely access these sites, and some even use residential IP services for extra security, although these can be quite difficult to obtain in countries like Turkey with so much state control of internet connectivity.

Recently, the Howard Government has flagged its intention to ban access to ART services for lesbians and single women on a Federal level and also to ban access to adoption by same-sex couples.

All children should have the expectation of having their family relationships recognised and protected under Federal law and in all States, regardless of which state they were born in.

Same-sex families should also be able to access the Family Court for a fair and equitable division of family property and to deal with child custody issues – just like heterosexual families can when a relationship ends between two parents.

Federally, same-sex families are ignored and discriminated against under the law.

In areas as diverse as Medicare benefits, superannuation, tax concessions and social security, the existence of GLBTI families is generally ignored. This creates a greater financial burden on non-heterosexual families.

A couple is defined as being a married or de facto heterosexual couple only. A family is defined as an individual or a couple with a dependent child.

This means that same-sex couples are not considered a family but as two individuals, with the care of any child related to only one of the parents.

Additional:

It’s a real issue for the LGBT community in many countries using the internet.  Even something as innocuous as posting same sex photos on photo sharing sites can lead to problems and possible imprisonment in many countries.  It’s always worth checking before you travel to these as sometimes it’s surprising where this can happen.  In any case, there are options as for instance you can find the best proxies for Instagram available for a reasonable cost.  Although these are often used for Instagram marketers they also do a good job of hiding your identity when uploading to the site.