Tasmanian Liberal members vote to repeal transgender laws

Tasmanian Liberal party members have voted in favour of repealing the state’s landmark laws on transgender recognition.

At the party’s state conference this weekend party members voted to turn back the laws which were introduced in 2019, with delegates saying the legislation favoured a minority of people.

According to local news outlet The Advocate conference delegate Andrea McLean spoke in favour of the motion saying empathy with transgender people did make good policy, especially if it elevated the needs of a minority above those of others. McLean said the legislation had made women’s spaces unsafe.

Sue Hickey, the Speaker of the Assembly, said the current laws had already been scrutinised by both houses and had been widely misrepresented to the public.

While the motion was passed, it was non-binding, so it is up to the government to decide if it will follow through on party member’s wishes.

Equality Tasmanian spokesperson, Charlie Burton called on Premier Peter Gutwein to provide a clear message to people who are transgender.

“Our gender laws have brought equity and inclusion to many trans and gender diverse Tasmanians without any of the adverse consequences sceptics predicted.”

“They have also been endorsed by the Tasmanian Law Reform Institute after an extensive inquiry and consultation.”

Advocates say if the government is considering changes the laws they need to share the advice that decision is being based upon.

“If the Attorney-General, Elise Archer, has received any alternative advice she should release it publicly so it can be properly scrutinised.”

“We call on Premier Peter Gutwein to rule out any repeal or watering down of our ground-breaking gender laws.” Dr Burton said. “It’s time for Liberal Party to join the rest of Tasmania in upholding the values of inclusion and equality for all.”

OIP Staff

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