September 2009


I went to see my local MP, who is Liberal-National party.

Prelude: I arranged a time when I thought they’d be asleep. I took the babies to the park for an hour or so beforehand, to tire them out. We were all in our best pollie-visiting gear. Of course they got filthy and I ended up with avocado smears on the back of my shirt. Then I was running late, after timing it all so well, because I thought I’d do just one more- then one more – then just one more lap of the car park to try and get baby boy to sleep. Baby girl sleeping right on cue, but no, baby boy wanted to visit the pollie. So off we all went.  Baby boy was charming, in the end, sitting at the meeting table and driving his car back and forth across the table top. My inner homophobe was glad that he picked today to be one of his “car” days and not one of his “wearing necklaces and saying ‘OH NO!’ in a highly camp voice” days.

My MP was very polite, formal but essentially supportive – says he has lesbian  mum friends – says it’s not his job to dictate morals and he is  interested in looking after the rights of the children and as far as he  can see, the rights of the children are best protected by having both  parents recognised. Of course he doesn’t know whether LNP will be a  binding vote, but he reckons it would be “highly unusual” for the LNP to  have a binding vote if the ALP is given a conscience vote.

I think it’s really important to make sure we get around to as many of  the “moderate” libs as we can (again, I wouldn’t waste any time on the  religious freaks).

Does anyone else know of anyone else who is visiting a pollie? How can  we encourage this to happen?

I took 4 documents with me:
– The Action Reform Change Qld (ARCQ) position paper
Summary of the research
Myths about gay & lesbian parenting
– “Meet the families” – some real life stories about how the laws  currently affect our families.

(I’m after somone to snazz up the design of these, if you are handy with desktop publishing. They look very amateurish)

Email me on mikhela_lee@yahoo.com.au if you’d like a copy. Also check out the section on approaching your member of parliament in our resources page.

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I am eleven years old and I have two mums and a brother, I see both my mothers as equal parents and think it is unfair that our family is not treated the same way as my friends who have straight parents.

Phoebe

Don’t forget, we need you to visit your Queensland state MP. The previous post tells you how to do it.


Can you visit an MP to support rainbow parents? We need to find people who live in the electorates of as many MPs in Queensland as possible.

If you lie in Queensland, YOUR GAY & LESBIAN COMMUNITY NEEDS YOU! You don’t have to be a gay family – it’s powerful to have people from the general community, families, godparents etc visiting MPs on our behalf.

Don’t worry – we’ll give you lots of info on how to do it.

So here’s what you can do:

Step 1: Who is your MP? You can find out your electorate here.

Step 2: Let us know you are planning to visit! Email me at mikhela_lee*at*yahoo.com.au or write a comment below

Step 3: Send a letter to your MP requesting a meeting. There’s a sample letter here.

Step 4: Think about what you might say. Haven’t visited an MP before? here’s a guide to what to expect. Check out the research into same sex parenting. Have a look at the common concerns about rainbow parenting.  Get clear on how the current lack of recognition affects you (or the person you are supporting, if you are a family member/friend) – there are some ideas here.

Don’t worry, it’s quite easy! All you have to do is tell your story – and in my experience with pollies, they do most of the talking anyway. It’s really just about humanising the issue. If you can take a baby or a photo of your grandchild/ godchild/ favourite rainbow family, so much the better.

We’re gradually getting together some resources for people to take with them when they visit MPs.

I’ve just posted twelve Myths about gay & lesbian parenting – you’ll find it under “resources and research” at the top right of this page.

There’s also a new sample letter to an MP requesting a meeting.

We already have links to a research summary and a literature review, and still to come is a summary of the issues to talk about with your MP.

The community consultation has been extended until 30 September.

We have almost two more weeks where we can’t flag.

So for the next almost two weeks I’d like to focus on getting professionals to write in.

Do you know any:

  • doctors
  • psychologists
  • social workers
  • child care workers
  • school teachers
  • lawyers

or any other child-related professionals who you could ask to write to the consultation?

They can still use the form letter at www.arcq.com.au – just ask them to add anything they have observed in their professional experience.

If they want to know about the research into same sex parenting we have a summary of the research here and a more extensive literature review, prepared by the Australian Psychological Society, here.

By now, many of you have heard about the “technical hitch” which means that although the state government’s Community Consultation into altruistic surrogacy and same sex parenting received 569 submissions, they can’t read them.

CAN YOU BELIEVE IT?

So the Dept of Justice & Attorney General has written to all  correspondents asking us to resubmit. Please do, although I’m finding it hard to be enthused myself.

They have extended the Consultation period until the 30 September, so if you have anyone who hasn’t submitted, don’t forget to remind them.

I must say, it is rather deflating. All that effort, wasted!

We know that at least 150 of the submissions are positive, as we can count the ones that went via the arcq.com.au website. Of the other 429, we have no idea.

Please resubmit. And if you can think of anything to say to get me reinvigorated, please do.

That’s Friday September 18, so if you haven’t already sent in a letter, you can do so quickly at www. arcq.com.au

I’ve no idea how many people have written in to support us, just like I have no idea how active the “anti” lobby has been.

Hopefully the anti-same sex parenting lobby are merely revealing themselves to be obsessed and irrational.  Don’t you  wonder why, when they profess to find it so abhorrent,  some people feel it  necessary to completely immerse themselves in thinking about the homosexual ‘lifestyle’? I suspect however, that our real problem is that the MPs are more conservative than the general community.

After tomorrow, we’ll need to get onto the next stage – approaching MPs so they get to see us as real people. It’s going to be a big job.

But don’t worry about it for now – just get your letters in (and your parents’, and your friends’, and your colleagues’…)

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