The Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF) condemns any attempts by Coalition MPs to hold a costly national plebiscite on marriage equality and instead urges the Government to allow a free vote on same-sex marriage as soon as possible.
ANMF Federal Secretary Lee Thomas says there must be a bipartisan approach to marriage equality in order to end the division within the community which has the potential to cause further discrimination against LGBTI Australians.
“Our members in same-sex relationships are entitled to, and quite frankly, deserve the same rights as the rest of the community,” Ms Thomas said today.
“A plebiscite will only prolong the public-division within the community and spark even more hatred and discrimination against LGBTI Australians, who do experience poorer mental health outcomes than the wider community.
“According to PwC, holding a standalone plebiscite would cost the Australian economy approximately $525 million. As nurses and midwives, we believe this money could be better spent on Australia’s health and under-resourced aged care system.
“The time has come for our federal politicians to stand-up for a free vote and introduce Legislation which will allow marriage equality for all Australians.’
The ANMF, with over 259,000 members, is the industrial and professional voice for nurses, midwives and assistants in nursing in Australia.
ANMF media inquiries: 0411 254 390.