Queensland now third state to end forced divorce for transgender people

Queensland has become the third state to remove the requirement for transgender and gender diverse people to divorce their spouse to have their gender legally affirmed.

The north-eastern state will join Victoria and New South Wales whose parliaments have also made the adjustments since Canberra voted to amend the Marriage Act last year.

Just four members of the 93-seat house voted against the changes, the three members of Katter’s Australian Party and Stephen Andrew of One Nation.

The restriction was included in legislation to ensure that same-sex marriage did not occur when a one person in a marriage changed gender, prior to the changes to marriage law.

Queensland was the first state to set the wheels in motion, with Attorney General Yvette D’Ath introducing the bill in March this year.

D’Ath said the bill was an important and necessary amendment to ensure true marriage equality is realised for sex and gender diverse Queenslanders, and would remove the requirement for someone to wanting their gender identity to be amended to be single.

Western Australia’s Attorney General, John Quigley, has indicated he is in favour of removing similar discrimination experienced by married transgender people applying to the state’s Gender Recognition Board.

The WA AG has asked the Western Australian Law Reform Commission to look into the issue.

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