Same-Sex bill could override anti-discrimination laws

A conservative Liberal Senator has released draft legislation ahead of the Same-Sex Marriage survey result, which would roll back and override anti-discrimination provisions.

Senator James Paterson has drafted the bill which would allow ministers and celebrants to refuse to perform gay marriages.

The senator also argues it would preserve the freedoms of all Australians.


The new legislation guarantees the right of parents to opt their children out of school classes which conflict with personal values.

Under Senator Paterson’s plan, it would also allow any person or business to refuse to co-operate with the staging of  same-sex weddings, protecting them from civil litigation under discrimination laws.

The Equality Campaign believes the Paterson proposal is regressive and unfair.

“It’s a rebuke to the Australian people,” Campaign Director, Tiernan Brady, told Fairfax.

“It literally is the opposite of what the people will have voted for.

“We’re not going back to a time when we have signs on windows saying certain people can’t apply or certain people won’t be served. That is precisely what the bill does.”

The suggestions have prompted an outcry on social media.


Serious question @SenPaterson: why are some people’s freedoms more equal than others? #auspol

The other utter hypocrisy in the legislation is that at the same time they want to keep exemptions to allow religious schools to fire people for being gay, the legislation would make it a breach of the law to fire someone for being against same-sex marriage.