New Poll: Australians Reject Religious Exemptions for LGBTQ+ Discrimination

A new poll has come out in Australia and revealed that more than half of Australian citizens oppose laws that allow faith-based schools to legally dismiss or refuse to hire teachers based on their sexuality and gender identity.

Mounting Opposition

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Due to this less than shocking revelation, an opposition to these discriminatory laws has quickly formed and the proposed changes to these laws are now facing political deadlock.

Facing Discrimination

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A spokesperson for Attorney General Mark Dreyfus said, “No Australian should be discriminated against because of who they are or what they believe.”

Polling Data on Discrimination

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The poll was commissioned by Just. Equal Australia and revealed that 52% of Australians oppose exemptions in the Sex Discrimination Act, with only 35% of the population supporting these exemptions.

Legalizing Discrimination

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Exemptions in the Sex Discrimination Act allow religious schools to discriminate based on sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity despite this being against the law in almost any other scenario.

Looking at the Numbers

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For a more detailed look at the poll, Greens voters strongly opposed the exemptions at 76%, while Labor and Liberal voters opposed them at 64% and 37%, respectively.

Government Response

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The Australian government drafted two bills in response to the Australian Law Reform Commission’s report and recommending repealing these blanket exemptions. 

Passing the Bill

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If these two drafted bills are passed, they would remove religious exemptions and introduce protections against religious vilification for LGBTQ+ individuals.

PM Albanese

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Prime Minister Anthony Albanese showed support for the bill, but highlighted the need for bipartisan support from not only the Coalition but also the cooperation with the Greens in the Senate.

Political Stalemate

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The Coalition has yet to finalize its stance on the bills, with Shadow Attorney General Michaelia Cash urging further consultation with religious groups and criticizing the government for not releasing the legislation transparently.

Playing Games With Faith

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In a statement Cash said, “Enough is enough,” and “Stop playing games with faith in Australia.”

Polling on Government Funding

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Interestingly, Just.Equal Australia’s poll also asked respondents if they oppose government funding for religious schools that discriminate against teachers and students based on sexuality and gender identity.

Not Funding Discrimination

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When asked if they would prefer the government not fund religious schools that discriminate based on sexuality and gender they found 59% of Australians do not want these schools funded by the government.

Discrimination in Faith-Based Services

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When expanded to faith-based services such as hospitals and disability services, 65% opposed exemptions allowing discrimination, while only 24% supported them.

Christian College Controversy

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At the same time, the Citipointe Christian College in Brisbane recently issued an apology for creating an enrollment contract that said transgender students would only be recognized by their “biological sex.” 

Causing Distress

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If this wasn’t bad enough the contract went on to describe homosexual acts as “immoral,” reportedly causing serious distress within the school community.

Regretting Their Actions

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The Citipointe College apology stated, “We regret any distress or concern, which was caused to students, parents and guardians of the students or prospective students of the college.” 

Political Implications

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A spokesperson for Just. Equal Australia Brian Greig warned that the Labor Party is now risking losing voters to the Green party or independents if it fails to act against discrimination in faith-based schools. 

Running Out of Time

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“With the election less than a year away, Labor is running out of time to fulfil the promise it made to Labor voters,” Greig said.

Greens’ Position

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However, David Shoebridge, the Greens’ justice spokesperson, said, “Where there are intersecting rights, it is essential that we look for a way forward that protects the most vulnerable and prevents the greatest amount of harm.”

The post New Poll: Australians Reject Religious Exemptions for LGBTQ+ Discrimination first appeared on Pulse of Pride.

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For transparency, this content was partly developed with AI assistance and carefully curated by an experienced editor to be informative and ensure accuracy.