Ladies and gentlemen, I am fairly certain that most of you here must have loved before. Everyone loves and needs to be loved. But what if you can't marry the person you sincerely love, the person you feel like they are your soulmate. What if your sweet family can't be protected by the laws since it is an 'unofficial' marriage. This is what happening to Australian homosexual couples whose marriages are not recognized. Albeit voted as one of the most gay-friendly country, Australia still bans same-sex marriage, after the passing of the Marriage Amendment Act in 2004, in which the government chose to update and amend the Marriage Act 1961 and insert the words "marriage means the union of a man and a woman to the exclusion of all others, voluntarily entered into for life." The ban serves only to hurt, to discriminate and to deprive more than 33,700 same-sex couples and their families of equal dignity, rights and protection by the law. Subsequently, I strongly believe that it is time for the bill that allows two people who love each other to have that love recognized by way of marriage to be passed.
It is urgent that same-sex marriage is legalized so that couples have access to the same benefits enjoyed by opposite-sex married couples. Since there is greater social reluctance to recognize the legitimacy of same-sex relationships, the benefit of automatic recognition that marriage confers is particularly important for lesbian and gay couples. In federal law alone, it is assessed that there are more than 1,100 legal, financial, and practical benefits, rights and protections available to married couples. When a same-sex partner is injured, the last thing the other partner needs is to have the legitimacy of the relationship questioned by hospital authorities. When a child is hurt on a school trip, and the biological parent is unavailable, the co-parent does not want to have to convince a school-teacher that the relationship is valid.