Overwhelming numbers back marriage equality
An online marriage equality survey conducted by the House of Representatives Social Policy and Legal Affairs committee has seen almost two thirds of respondents giving their backing to same-sex marriage after an unprecedented number of people took part.
Of the total 276,437 submissions received by April 20, over 177,000 (64 per cent) were in favour for introducing marriage equality.
A final push by advocacy groups Australian Marriage Equality and GetUp late last week saw the level of support lift by about six per cent, with nearly 50,000 people last Friday alone filling in the survey to show their support.
Australian Marriage Equality national convener Alex Greenwich said the result showed how passionately Australians support the reform.
“No other reform has ever motivated this many Australians to engage in a parliamentary inquiry,” he said.
“Marriage equality is clearly not a fringe or minority issue – it is an issue which speaks to core Australian values.
“Marriage equality goes to heart of the nation’s aspiration to be a fair and equal society.”
Over three quarters of responses to the survey also agreed that religious celebrants should not be obliged to marry same-sex couples.
“We respect the freedom of religious celebrants not to marry us and in return we ask that they respect our right to marry under civil law,” Greenwich added.
The survey also found there was slightly more public support for the marriage equality bill introduced by Greens MP Adam Bandt over the proposed private member’s bill by Labor MP Stephen Jones, with Bandt’s bill receiving 64 per cent support.
Full results of the survey can be viewed at http://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/House_of_Representatives_Committees?url=spla%2Fbill+marriage%2Fsurvey.htm