Sunday August 29th 2021
LGBTIQ+ Advocates Urge Major Parties to Seize Opportunity to Protect Trans, Gender Diverse and Intersex Workers
Just.Equal Australia is urging Government, Opposition and cross bench Senators to support amendments this week that will finally ensure trans, gender diverse and intersex workers enjoy the same rights as other employees.
The Greens will move amendments to the Sex Discrimination and Fair Work (Respect at Work) Amendment Bill 2021 that will include gender identity and sex characteristics in the Fair Work Act, alongside existing attributes like race, disability, sex and sexual orientation.
‘This week, the Senate has the opportunity to provide trans, gender diverse and intersex Australians with the exact same protections against workplace mistreatment and unlawful termination as other groups,’ Just.Equal Australia spokesperson Dr Charlie Burton said.
‘The fact gender identity and sex characteristics aren’t already explicitly included in the Fair Work Act isn’t just a legislative oversight, it places the ability of trans, gender diverse and intersex workers to access the Fair Work Commission in doubt.’
‘Fixing this gap is straightforward, and should be uncontroversial, given Parliament voted eight years ago to include trans, gender diverse and intersex people in the Sex Discrimination Act. We call on all Senators to support amendments to include them in the Fair Work Act, too.’
The recent Private Lives 3 Report found respondents were far more likely to experiences unfair treatment on the basis of gender identity than sexual orientation.*
‘We know trans and gender diverse workers experience far-too-much discrimination in the workplace, with far-too-few legal protections. These amendments will help deliver better outcomes for trans and gender diverse employees around the country,’ Dr Burton added.
‘We thank Senator Janet Rice for proposing amendments that would finally guarantee trans, gender diverse and intersex employees can access the Fair Work Commission on the exact same basis as everyone else, including lesbians, gay men and bisexuals.’
‘Coalition, Labor and cross-bench Senators now have the chance to show that they support our equality. LGBTIQ+ Australians will be watching closely this week to see what decision they make.’
For a copy of this statement on the web, click here
For more information contact Charlie Burton on 0402 016 625.
*Adam O. Hill et al, Private Lives 3: The Health and Wellbeing of LGBTIQ People in Australia, La Trobe University, August 2020, page 40: https://www.latrobe.edu.au/arcshs/publications/private-lives/private-lives-3