Parents And Friends of Lesbians and Gays in Australia (PFLAG) are asking the Austrlian government to cancel the plans for a national vote on marriage equality.
They are calling for this so that their children to not become “victim” to a “ugly public debate”, and ask for there to be a vote within parliament instead. The leader of the opposition has previously said that he will do just that if elected into office.
A spokesperson for PFLAG, Shelly Argent, had this to say: “As parents, we call on [prime minister Malcolm] Turnbull to show leadership and have a free vote [in federal parliament] so our LGBTI children and their families are protected from the abuse and indignity of an ugly public debate over their right to equality under the law.”
A national study did show that 40% of Australians are in favour of a plebiscite on marriage equality, but that number became divided when it was revealed that the vote would be non-binding as well as having negative impacts.
Public support for the refereundum also waned when it became apparent that the Australian Psychological Society were in opposition, due to the negative impact public prejudice would have on LGBTQ+ people.
Shelly continued: “[Marriage equality] needs to be dealt with sensibly in the federal parliament and not reduced to a slanging match in the public square with our children used as political punching bags.”
The Australian Labor Party have also previously opposed the plebiscite before the party leader’s recent comments, citing that the plebiscite was unnecessary and expensive when they Australian public have shown support for same-sex marriage.