Uniting Network completely rejects Mark Latham’s gender bill

The Uniting Church’s LGBTIQ+ advocacy group has put in a submission to the inquiry looking into Mark Latham’s proposed Education Legislation Amendment (Parental Rights) Bill 2020. 

Uniting Network NSW/ACT say they completely reject the proposed bill in its entirety saying it will increase harm to transgender and gender diverse, including increasing chances of suicidality.

The legislation put forward by the One Nation NSW leader would prohibit teachers, counsellors or support staff in government schools mentioning gender fluidity or referring to any resources that might support transgender or gender diverse students.

Jason Masters, co-convenor of the group, says there is also concern that the One Nation leader is heading the inquiry into the bill he’s advocating for.

“We have made an extensive and detailed submission to the Legislative Council’s Portfolio Committee No.3. We feel there is a significant conflict of interest with the Hon Mr. Latham chairing this Committee to review this appalling piece of legislation”

“Uniting Network’s submission is approximately 50 pages of detailed analysis of the legislation against the various United Nations conventions that Australia is a signatory to, including ‘The International Convention on the Rights of the Child’ and also the ‘The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights’, as well as bringing together significant academic research on the risks to transgender and gender diverse students in their education and home settings.”

The Uniting Network submission indicates there is no religious justification for the proposed bill.

Masters says if the bill is adopted there will be negative outcomes for transgender and gender diverse youth.

“If this legislation were to be successful, there would be negative health and welfare outcomes for transgender and gender diverse students in NSW Schools, and the broader LGBTIQ student population.

“Rather than threatening professional educators and educational support staff, the NSW Government should be funding improved pre-service and in-service training for all NSW teachers around the health, welfare and inclusion of all LGBTIQ students.” Master said.

“Additionally, it should undertake a significant review of the PDHPE curriculum to improve all students’ education about LGBTIQ people and LGBTIQ family and LGBTIQ students around sexual health education, relationships, consent, etc. Finally, funding should be available to improve facilities for transgender and gender diverse students in our schools.”

“The proposed bill is likely to reduce social harmony within NSW and increase the risk of harm and suicidality of transgender and gender diverse students.”

A full copy of the detailed submission can be found here.

OIP Staff

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