LGBT rights in Australia
Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights in Australia have advanced since the late-twentieth century. LGBT people in Australia are afforded protection from discrimination and are equally regarded as individuals who possess the same rights and responsibilities as others.
|Status||Always legal for women; legal for men in all states and territories since 1997|
Equal age of consent in all states and territories since 2016
|Gender identity||Change of sex recognised in all jurisdictions|
|Military||Lesbian/gay/bisexual personnel allowed to serve openly since 1992; transgender personnel allowed to serve openly since 2010|
|Discrimination protections||Federal protections for sexual orientation, gender identity and intersex status since 2013; LGBT protections in all state and territory laws|
|Recognition of relationships||Same-sex marriage since 2017|
|Adoption||Equal adoption rights for same-sex couples in all states and territories|
Australia is a federation, with most laws affecting LGBT and intersex rights made by its states and territories. Between 1975 and 1997, the states and territories progressively repealed anti-homosexuality laws that dated back to the days of the British Empire. Since 2016, each jurisdiction has an equal age of consent for all sexual acts. All jurisdictions offer expungement schemes to clear the criminal records of people charged or convicted for consensual sexual acts that are no longer illegal.
Australia legalised same-sex marriage on 9 December 2017. States and territories began granting domestic partnership benefits and relationship recognition to same-sex couples from 2003 onwards, with federal law recognising same-sex couples since 2009 as de facto relationships. Alongside marriage, same-sex relationships may be recognised by states or territories in various ways, including through civil unions, domestic partnerships, registered relationships and/or as unregistered de facto relationships.
Joint and stepchild same-sex adoption is legal nationwide, with the Northern Territory the last jurisdiction to pass an adoption equality law in March 2018. Discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity or expression is prohibited in every state and territory, with concurrent federal protections for sexual orientation, gender identity and intersex status since 1 August 2013.
Transgender rights in Australia and intersex rights in Australia vary between jurisdictions, with some states requiring a person to undergo sex reassignment surgery before changing the legal sex on official records such as birth certificates. Non-binary Australians can legally register a "non-specific" sex on federal legal documents and in the records of some states and territories.
Australia is recognised as one of the most LGBT-accepting countries in the world, with opinion polls and the Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey indicating widespread popular support for same-sex marriage. A 2013 Pew Research poll found that 79% of Australians agreed that homosexuality should be accepted by society, making it the fifth-most supportive country surveyed in the world. With its long history of LGBT activism and annual Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras festival, Sydney has been named one of the most gay-friendly cities in Australia, and the world as a whole.
The term LGBTI is increasingly used in Australia, rather than just LGBT, with the I denoting intersex people. Organisations that include intersex people as well as LGBT people include the National LGBTI Health Alliance and community media. Also used are the terms LGBTQI, and LGBTQIA, with the A denoting asexual people, and Q queer people.
Legality of same-sex sexual activity
Prior to European contact, there were no known legal or social punishments for engaging in homosexual activity. Sex seems to have been a very open topic among the Indigenous people. Among the Arrernte people, sex plays were particularly ubiquitous, even among young children who would play "mothers and fathers" in a very literal sense. They would typically mimic the sex acts they saw their parents and other adults perform. These acts seem to have been performed regardless of sex. Traditions of "boy-wives" also existed where young boys, typically 14 years of age, would serve as intimate servants of older men until they reached the age of initiation, at which point the young man would have his penis subincised. The Indigenous people did not have the typical Western view of heterosexuality and homosexuality.
Colonial and 20th century persecution
As part of the British Empire, Australian colonies inherited anti-homosexuality laws such as the Buggery Act of 1533. These provisions were maintained in criminal sodomy laws passed by 19th century colonial parliaments, and subsequently by state parliaments after Federation. Same-sex sexual activity between men was considered a capital crime, resulting in the execution of people convicted of sodomy until 1890. The laws also punished sodomy between heterosexual partners, but did not apply to lesbian relationships. Oral sex as well as masturbation, whether heterosexual or homosexual, public or private, were also criminal offences.
Different jurisdictions gradually began to reduce the death penalty for sodomy to life imprisonment, with Victoria the last state to reduce the penalty in 1949. Community debate about decriminalising homosexual activity began in the 1960s, with the first lobby groups Daughters of Bilitis, the Homosexual Law Reform Society and the Campaign Against Moral Persecution formed in 1969 and 1970.
In October 1973, former Prime Minister John Gorton put forward a motion in the federal House of Representatives that "in the opinion of this House homosexual acts between consenting adults in private should not be subject to the criminal law". All three major parties were given a conscience vote, and the motion was passed by 64 votes to 40.
|Party (MPs)||Votes for||Votes against||Abstained/Absent|
However, Gorton's motion had no legal effect as the legality of homosexuality was a matter for state governments. Over a 22-year span between 1975 and 1997, the states and territories gradually repealed their sodomy laws as support for gay law reform grew.
South Australia was the first jurisdiction to decriminalise male homosexual activity on 17 September 1975, with the Australian Capital Territory's decriminalisation, first proposed in 1973, approved by the Fraser Federal Government with effect from 4 November 1976. Victoria followed on 23 December 1980, although a "soliciting for immoral purposes" provision added by conservatives saw police harassment continue in that state for some years.
Other jurisdictions to decriminalise male homosexuality were the Northern Territory (effective 4 October 1983), New South Wales (22 May 1984) and (after four failed attempts) Western Australia (7 December 1989). In exchange for decriminalisation, Western Australian conservatives required a higher age of consent and an anti-proselytising provision similar to the United Kingdom's section 28, both since repealed.
Queensland legalised male same-sex activity with effect from 19 January 1991 after the long-standing Nationals government had lost power.
The Tasmanian Government refused to repeal its sodomy law, which led to the case of Toonen v Australia, in which the United Nations Human Rights Committee ruled that sodomy laws violated the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Tasmania's continued refusal to repeal the offending law led the Keating Government to pass the Human Rights (Sexual Conduct) Act 1994, which legalised sexual activity between consenting adults throughout Australia and prohibited laws that arbitrarily interfered with the sexual conduct of adults in private.
In the 1997 case of Croome v Tasmania, Rodney Croome applied to the High Court of Australia to strike down the Tasmanian anti-gay law as inconsistent with federal law; after having failed to have the matter thrown out, the Tasmanian Government decriminalised homosexuality on 1 May 1997, becoming the final Australian jursidiction to do so.
Age of consent equalisation
The age of consent laws of all states and territories of Australia apply equally regardless of the gender and sexual orientation of participants. The age of consent in all states, territories and on the federal level is 16, except for Tasmania and South Australia where it is 17. The age of consent was equalised in 2002 by Western Australia and in 2003 by New South Wales and the Northern Territory. The last state to equalise its age of consent was Queensland in 2016, when it brought the age of consent for anal intercourse into line with vaginal intercourse and oral sex from 18 to 16 years of age.
Historical conviction expungement
All Australian jurisdictions have passed legislation that allows men charged or convicted under historical anti-homosexuality laws to apply for expungement, which clears the charge or conviction from their criminal record, and in South Australia, men can apply to have their convictions spent, but not expunged. After expungement, the conviction is treated as having never occurred, with the individual not required to disclose it and the conviction not showing up on a police records check. Without expungement laws, men who had been convicted of historical sodomy offences were at a disadvantage, including being subject to restrictions on travel and in applying for some jobs.
The dates when these laws took effect were as follows:
Recognition of same-sex relationships
Australian law allows the recognition of same-sex relationships in a multitude of forms, depending on the couple's wishes. Same-sex couples can marry, enter into a civil union or domestic partnership in most states and territories, or can simply live together in an unregistered de facto relationship. Couples who enter into a civil union or domestic partnership are recognised as being in a de facto relationship for the purpose of federal law. According to the 2016 Census, there were around 46,800 same-sex couples in Australia.
Federal de facto relationship recognition
Following the Australian Human Rights Commission's report Same-Sex: Same Entitlements, and an audit of Commonwealth legislation, in 2009, the federal Rudd Government introduced several reforms designed to equalise treatment for same-sex couples and their families. The reforms took the form of two pieces of amending legislation, the Same-Sex Relationships (Equal Treatment in Commonwealth Laws-General Law Reform) Act 2008 and the Same-Sex Relationships (Equal Treatment in Commonwealth Laws-Superannuation) Act 2008. These laws amended 85 other existing federal laws to equalise the treatment of same-sex couples, and any children raised by those couples, in a range of areas including taxation, superannuation, health, social security, aged care and child support, immigration, citizenship and veterans' affairs.
For instance, in relation to social security and general family law, same-sex couples were not previously recognised as a couple for social security or family assistance purposes. A person who had a same-sex de facto partner was treated as a single person. The reforms ensured that, for the first time under Australian law, same-sex couples were recognised as a couple akin to opposite-sex partners. Consequently, a same-sex couple receives the same rate of social security and family assistance payments as a mixed-sex couple. Generally speaking, a couple in a de facto relationship is treated equally to a married couple in legal proceedings, with a few small differences in family law disputes, including property settlements and entitlements to spousal maintenance. A partner in a de facto relationship may also be required to prove the existence of a relationship before a court in order to access benefits, a process which is automatic for married couples and consequently can have a discriminatory impact on same-sex couples, who were then unable to marry in Australia.
De facto relationships also have different time eligibility requirements than marriages under laws relating to Centrelink, migration, family law matters and assisted reproduction. The higher burden of proof for de facto relationships relative to marriages can impact on a person's ability to arrange their partner's funeral, and the rights of a de facto partner may be poorly understood by government departments.
From 1 July 2009, amendments to the Social Security Act 1991 meant that customers in a same-sex de facto relationship are recognised as partners for Centrelink and Family Assistance Office purposes. All customers who are assessed as being a member of a couple have their rate of payment calculated in the same way.
Inheritance and property rights
Before same-sex marriage provided the automatic legal protections that married couples received under the law with regard to inheriting assets from their partners, same-sex couples had to take specific legal actions. Individuals were not entitled to a partial pension after their same-sex partner's death. Same-sex and de facto couples who separated also did not have the same property rights as married couples under federal law and were required to use more expensive state courts, rather than the Family Court, to resolve disputes. The plan to grant equivalent rights to gays and de factos had been up for discussion since 2002, and all states eventually agreed, but the change was blocked because the Howard Government insisted on excluding same-sex couples.
In June 2008, the Rudd Government introduced the Family Law Amendment (De Facto Financial Matters and Other Measures) Act 2008 to allow same-sex and de facto couples access to the federal Family Court on property and maintenance matters, rather than the state Supreme Court. This reform was not part of the 100 equality measures promised by the Government but stemmed from the 2002 agreement between the states and territories that the previous Howard Government did not fulfill. Coalition amendments to the bill failed and it was passed in November 2008.
The Marriage Act 1961 defines marriage as the union of "2 people". The Act was amended in 2004 by the Howard Government to recognise only marriages between a man and a woman. Many subsequent attempts to legalise same-sex marriage nationwide failed in the Federal Parliament. The Turnbull Government put legislation to the Parliament establishing a plebiscite on same-sex marriage, to be held in February 2017, though this was rejected by the Senate after it failed to attract the support of the opposition Labor Party and minor parties.
Several years beforehand, the Australian Capital Territory had passed laws instituting same-sex marriage in the territory. These laws were rejected by the High Court of Australia in December 2013, shortly after they came into effect. The Court held that Section 51 of the Constitution of Australia grants the Federal Parliament the power to legislate with regard to marriage, and the federal definition of marriage overrides any state or territory definition under Section 109. The court did find, however, that "marriage" for the purposes of Section 51 includes same-sex marriage, thus clarifying that there is no constitutional impediment to the Federal Parliament legislating for same-sex marriage in the future. Before the legalisation of same-sex marriage in December 2017, same-sex couples who married overseas were prevented from divorcing in Australia.
The Turnbull Government eventually relented on its policy for a plebiscite on the issue, and instead held a non-binding voluntary postal survey, asking Australians if same-sex couples should be allowed to marry. The survey, held between September and November 2017, did not require parliamentary approval. It returned a 61.6% "Yes" response in favour of same-sex marriage. A bill to legalise same-sex marriage was introduced into the Parliament shortly after the results were announced. The bill, titled the Marriage Amendment (Definition and Religious Freedoms) Act 2017, passed the Senate by 43 votes to 12 on 29 November 2017, and passed the House of Representatives on 7 December 2017. The bill received royal assent on 8 December 2017 and went into effect the following day. Same-sex marriages lawfully entered into overseas automatically became recognised and the first marriages under the amended law were to occur on 9 January 2018. However, several couples successfully applied for an exemption from the normal one-month waiting period, and the first legal same-sex wedding under Australian law was held on 15 December 2017, with further weddings occurring the following day.
State and territory recognition
Aside from Western Australia and the Northern Territory, all other states and territories in Australia have their own state-based civil union or domestic partnership laws. Cohabiting same-sex couples are otherwise recognised as de facto couples for the purposes of state or territory law.
Same-sex couples may enter into civil partnerships in the Australian Capital Territory and Queensland. Both unions allow couples to have state-sanctioned ceremonies and both laws are commonly referred to as civil unions. In New South Wales, Tasmania, Victoria and South Australia, same-sex couples can enter into domestic registered partnerships/relationships. These provide conclusive proof of the existence of the relationship, thereby gaining the same rights afforded to de facto couples under state and federal law without having to prove any further factual evidence of the relationship. In this way, a registered relationship is similar to a registered partnership or civil union in other parts of the world. Victoria and Tasmania's domestic partnership laws also allow any couple the option of having an official ceremony when registering their relationship. South Australia's law allowing registered relationships and recognised overseas and interstate same-sex unions went into effect on 1 August 2017. In Western Australia and the Northern Territory, same-sex couples must often seek judicial approval to prove a de facto relationship exists. Norfolk Island, from 1 July 2016, has been incorporated into NSW legislation, under both the Norfolk Island Legislation Amendment Act 2015 and the Territories Legislation Amendment Act 2016.
Prior to the federal legalisation of same-sex marriage, six Australian jurisdictions (Tasmania, Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria and South Australia), comprising 90% of Australia's population, recognised same-sex marriages and civil partnerships performed overseas, providing automatic recognition of such unions in their respective state registers.
|State/Territory||Relationship recognition scheme||Register||Ceremony (optional)||Overseas same-sex marriages/unions recognised|
|New South Wales†|
† Including Norfolk Island, where NSW laws apply
Adoption and parenting
States and territories make laws with respect to adoption and child-rearing. Since April 2018, same-sex couples can adopt children in all jurisdictions in Australia. The 2011 Australian census counted 6,300 children living in same-sex couple families, up from 3,400 in 2001, make up one in a thousand of all children in couple families (0.1%). Altruistic surrogacy is legal in all Australian jurisdictions - except Western Australia (where it is legal for heterosexual couples but illegal for singles and same-sex couples). Commercial surrogacy is banned nationwide. The Northern Territory has no laws on surrogacy at all. In recent years, a dramatic increase in the use of overseas surrogacy programs has occurred amongst both same-sex and opposite-sex couples, creating some unique legal concerns with respect to citizenship and parenting rights. It is believed that only 1 in 20 surrogacy arrangements occur in Australia, with almost all involving foreign surrogates mainly from Southeast Asia and the United States. Assisted reproductive technology/treatment (ART) is accessible to same-sex couples in all states and territories, with South Australia being the final jurisdiction to pass such a law, in March 2017. Female same-sex partners of mothers are usually considered the automatic co-parent of the child(ren) born as a result of assisted reproduction.
|State/Territory||Same-sex couple joint petition||Individual adoption (LGBT or non-LGBT)||Same-sex stepparent adoption||Altruistic surrogacy for same-sex couples|
|Australian Capital Territory|
|New South Wales and Norfolk Island|
Federal law protections
Prior to 1 August 2013, Australia did not comprehensively outlaw discrimination based on sexual orientation at the federal level. However, in response to Australia's agreement to implement the principle of non-discrimination in employment and occupation pursuant to the International Labour Organisation Convention No.111 (ILO 111), the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission Act 1986 established the HREOC, and empowers it to investigate complaints of discrimination in employment and occupation on various grounds, including sexual orientation, and to resolve such complaints by conciliation. If it cannot be conciliated, the Commission prepares a report to the federal Attorney-General who then tables the report in Parliament. Employment discrimination on the ground of "sexual orientation" is also rendered unlawful in the Fair Work Act 2009, allowing complaints to be made to the Fair Work Ombudsman.
The Human Rights (Sexual Conduct) Act 1994 provided that sexual conduct involving only consenting adults (18 years or over) acting in private would not be subject to arbitrary interference by law enforcement. This applies to any law of the Commonwealth, State or Territory.
In late 2010, the Gillard Labor Government announced a review of federal anti-discrimination laws, with the aim of introducing a single equality law that would also cover sexual orientation and gender identity. This approach was abandoned and instead on 25 June 2013, the Federal Parliament added marital or relationship status, sexual orientation, gender identity and intersex status as protected attributes to the existing Sex Discrimination Act 1984 by passing the Sex Discrimination Amendment (Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Intersex Status) Act 2013.
From 1 August 2013, discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex people became illegal for the first time under national law. Aged care providers who are owned by religious groups will no longer be able to exclude people from aged care services based on their LGBTI or same-sex relationship status. However, religious owned private schools and religious owned hospitals are exempt from gender identity and sexual orientation provisions in the Sex Discrimination Amendment (Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Intersex Status) Act 2013. No religious exemptions exist on the basis of intersex status.
In introducing federal discrimination protections for LGBTI people, the Gillard Government promised that religious bodies would be exempt, unless they were aged care providers receiving Commonwealth funding. The main exemptions are in sections 37 and 38 of the Sex Discrimination Act 1984, which include the ability for religious educational institutions to discriminate against LGBT students and teachers "in good faith in order to avoid injury to the religious susceptibilities of adherents of that religion". In 2017, Perth teacher Craig Campbell was dismissed from a Baptist school after he revealed his sexuality on social media. The Greens promised to repeal religious exemptions to LGBT anti-discrimination protections before the 2016 election, while in January 2018 the Labor Party announced it had no plans to act upon the issue. In the wake of the same-sex marriage debate, the Turnbull Government commissioned a review of religious freedoms chaired by Phillip Ruddock, after conservative Coalition politicians called for increased religious freedoms to discriminate against LGBT people. The need to protect religious freedom was emphasised by Scott Morrison after he replaced Malcolm Turnbull as Prime Minister.
In October 2018, various portions of the Ruddock Review report were leaked, which included recommendations to clarify how religious schools could discriminate against LGBT teachers and students. This led to media backlash and polling showed that legal religious discrimination against gay students and teachers was opposed by most Australians, with majorities from every party's voters opposed. The Greens moved to repeal the religious school exemptions altogether, with Labor offering to work with the Coalition to repeal the student discrimination exemptions. After initially defending the status quo, Morrison stated the Coalition would remove the exemption allowing LGBT children to be discriminated against. Labor subsequently offered to repeal the exemptions allowing LGBT teachers' dismissal as well, which gained supported from Liberals Treasurer Josh Frydenberg and Wentworth by-election candidate Dave Sharma, but split the broader Liberal Party. Despite a promise to move rapidly on the issue, the Government and Opposition disagreed on the amendments to be made, blaming each other for the impasse. In 2019, the Morrison Government referred the issue to the Australian Law Reform Commission.
State and territory law protections
Each of the states and territories introduced their own anti-discrimination laws to protect LGBTI people from discrimination before the Commonwealth did so in 2013. The first anti-discrimination protections were enacted in New South Wales by the Wran Government in 1982, two years before the decriminalisation of homosexuality in that state. All have religious exemptions, although discrimination by religious schools against LGBT students is not permitted in Queensland, the Northern Territory or Tasmania. South Australia requires a religious school discriminating against LGBT students to set out its position in a written policy. Tasmanian discrimination laws have the fewest exemptions, prohibiting discrimination by religious schools against both LGBT staff and students.
Gay panic defence abolition
Historically Australian courts applied the provocation doctrine to allow the use of the "homosexual advance defence", more commonly known as the "gay panic defence". This meant that for violent crimes such as murder, a male killer could argue that an unwanted homosexual advance from another man provoked him to lose control and respond violently, which could lead to his criminal responsibility being downgraded from murder to manslaughter and therefore a reduced penalty.
The first recorded use of the defence in Australia was the 1992 Victorian case of R v Murley, in which a man was acquitted of murder after killing a gay man who had allegedly made a sexual advance towards him. The defence was recognised nationwide by a majority of the High Court of Australia in the 1997 case of Green v the Queen. This led to calls for the defence to be abolished by legislation.
Several states and territories subsequently abolished the defence of provocation altogether, including Tasmania, New South Wales, Western Australia and Victoria. The Australian Capital Territory and the Northern Territory took a more targeted approach to reform, specifically abolishing the availability of non-violent homosexual advances as a defence. Queensland took a similar approach in 2017 by removing the "unwanted sexual advance" from the defence of provocation, while allowing courts to consider circumstances of an "exceptional character".
South Australia is the only state to retain the gay panic defence; however, following a review by the South Australian Law Reform Institute state Attorney General, Vickie Chapman, committed to its abolition.
School anti-bullying programs
The Safe Schools Coalition Australia seeks to combat anti-LGBTI abuse or bullying, which research suggested was prevalent across Australian schools. Initially established in Victorian schools in 2010, the program was launched nationwide in 2014 under the Abbott Government. The program has received support from a majority of state governments, LGBTI support groups and other religious and non-governmental organisations such as beyondblue, headspace and the Australian Secondary Principals Association.
However, the program faced criticism in 2015 and 2016 from social conservatives including the Australian Christian Lobby, LNP politicians such as Cory Bernardi, George Christensen, Eric Abetz, Malcolm Turnbull, Tony Abbott, Kevin Andrews and former Labor Senator Joe Bullock for indoctrinating children with "Marxist cultural relativism", and age-inappropriate sexuality and gender concepts in schools, while others criticised the Marxist political views of Roz Ward, a key figure in the program. Petitions were also delivered against the program by members of Australia's Chinese and Indian communities.
The concerns led to a review under the Turnbull Government, which implemented a number of changes such as restricting the program to high schools, removing role playing activities and requiring parental consent before students take part. The federal changes were rejected by the governments of Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory, who persisted with the original program and announced they would fund it independently of the Federal Government. The federal changes were supported in New South Wales, Western Australia and Tasmania, while Queensland and South Australia have voiced criticism without announcing whether they would implement the federal changes. In December 2016, the Federal Government confirmed that it would not renew funding for the program after it expired in mid-2017. The program operates extensively in Victoria and is fully funded by the State Government. State governments are also fully responsible for directly funded programs in South Australia, and the Australian Capital Territory. Several schools in Western Australia, Queensland, Tasmania and the Northern Territory remain signed up to the national Safe Schools registry.
Birth certificates and driver licences are within the jurisdiction of the states, whereas Medicare and passports are matters for the Commonwealth. The requirements for a person's change of sex to be recognised and amended in government records and official documents depend on the jurisdiction. Sex and gender recognition for federal purposes such as Medicare and passports require only a letter. By contrast, some states impose additional requirements for gender recognition that have been criticised by the Australian Human Rights Commission and LGBT advocates. In some states, the person must undergo sex reassignment surgery. The requirement to divorce if one was married was removed as a result of the legalisation of same-sex marriage in 2017. This took effect on 9 December 2018, unless the state or territory governments removed this requirement beforehand. Advocates argue that marital status and surgery requirements are irrelevant to the recognition of a person's sex or gender identity, and instead should rely on their self-identification.
As of July 2018, the Australian Capital Territory and South Australia were the only two Australian jurisdictions to have amended their laws to allow a person to change the sex recorded on their birth certificate without a requirement to undergo sex reassignment surgery or divorce if already married. The Northern Territory followed suit by removing both requirements in November 2018. Western Australia removed the forced divorce requirement in February 2019, having already allowed hormonal therapy as an alternative to sex reassignment surgery for a legal gender change since 2011. Victoria passed legislation removing only the forced divorce requirement in May 2018 and later in August 2019 removed the sex reassignment surgery requirement from law.
Queensland and New South Wales abolished the forced divorce provisions from the statute books in June 2018, though both jurisdictions still require an individual to have undergone surgery before being permitted to alter their sex descriptor on a certificate.
In Tasmania, a bill was introduced in the Parliament in October 2018 by the Liberal Government to repeal only the forced divorce requirement. However, amendments moved by the Labor opposition and the Greens were successfully passed by the House of Assembly in November 2018 (despite government opposition) which repealed the requirement for sex reassignment surgery, recognised non-binary genders, made the inclusion of gender optional on a birth certificate, lowered the age a person can change their legal gender without parental permission to sixteen, allowed parents of children of any age to apply for gender change consistent with the "will and preference" of the child, extended the time limit after birth for parents of intersex children to register their child's birth to 120 days and updated anti-discrimination law. The bill passed the Parliament in April 2019 and received royal assent the following month, with the majority of the bill commencing on the same day. The part that contains amendments to the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Act 1999 commenced on 5 September 2019.
Summary table of birth certificates by jurisdiction
|Jurisdiction||Change of sex on birth certificates||Sex reassignment surgery optional?||Forced divorce abolished?||Non-binary gender recognised?||Anti-discrimination laws concerning gender identity|
|Australian Capital Territory|
|New South Wales and Norfolk Island|
Birth certificates are issued by states and territories. In many states, sterilisation is (or has been) required for transgender people to obtain recognition of their preferred gender in cardinal identification documents.
Gender dysphoria treatment
Medical treatment for gender dysphoria in pubescent children is generally divided into two stages:
- Stage 1 treatment involves the use of puberty blockers, which are reversible and can be accessed by children who have reached stages 2 or 3 of pubertal development on the Tanner Scale – this may occur as early as 10 years old;
- Stage 2 treatment involves administering cross-sex hormone therapy such as testosterone or oestrogen. This has irreversible effects (such as a deepened voice following female-to-male hormone replacement therapy or breast growth after male-to-female hormone replacement therapy). It is usually available once a person has reached 16 years of age.
Transgender Australians are generally not eligible for sex reassignment surgery until they turn 18 years old.
Medicare Australia provides cover for many of the major surgeries needed for sex reassignment surgery. However, there can often be a gap between the Medicare benefit paid and the amount the surgeon will charge, sometimes in the amount of thousands of dollars. However, many Australian private health insurance policies provide private hospital cover policy that includes any SRS procedure that is also covered by Medicare. There is typically a waiting period before insurers allow people to claim for these services, usually about 12 months.
Since November 2017, a transgender child is able to access both puberty blockers and cross-sex hormone treatment without court approval if there is agreement between the child, their parents and treating doctors. The first "Australian Standards of Care and Treatment Guidelines for trans and gender diverse children and adolescents" were released in 2018.
Although Australian terminology has expanded from "LGBT" to "LGBTI" to include intersex people, their experience remain poorly understood in the absence of substantial research in the area. Intersex status was previously considered a subset of gender identity, as reflected in the anti-discrimination law definitions of most states and territories of "gender identity" to include people with indeterminate sexual characteristics. Organisation Intersex International Australia considers this inaccurate on the basis that "intersex" people are defined by their biological sexual characteristics rather than their gender identities.
A key concern regarding intersex human rights is that intersex infants, who are unable to give consent, may be subjected to medical operations to reduce the prominence of non-binary sex characteristics of their genitalia. These procedures are criticised by intersex advocates who argue that they compromise the individual rights to bodily autonomy, integrity and dignity, drawing parallels to female genital mutilation, in contrast to the position that parents of intersex children may consent on their behalf to having medical interventions conducted in that they believe it to be in the best interests of their children.
In October 2013, the Australian Senate published a report entitled "Involuntary or coerced sterilisation of intersex people in Australia". The Senate found that "normalising" surgeries are taking place in Australia, often on infants and young children. The report made 15 recommendations, including ending cosmetic genital surgeries on infants and children and providing for legal oversight of individual cases. The recommendations have not been implemented.
Intersex individuals may apply for an Australian passport and other Commonwealth documentation with an "X" sex descriptor. Since 2011, the Australian Passport Office has issued such identity documents to all individuals with documented "indeterminate" sex. Their guidelines state that "sex reassignment surgery is not a prerequisite to issue a passport in a new gender. Birth or citizenship certificates do not need to be amended". Birth certificates are issued by states and territories. As of 2019, the Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales, the Northern Territory, South Australia and Tasmania have introduced "X" sex descriptors on birth certificates.
In March 2017, representatives of Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome Support Group Australia and Organisation Intersex International Australia participated in an Australian and Aotearoa/New Zealand consensus "Darlington Statement" by intersex community organisations and others. The statement calls for legal reform, including the criminalisation of deferrable intersex medical interventions on children, and improved access to peer support. It calls for an end to legal classification of sex and stating that legal third classifications, like binary classifications, were based on structural violence and failed to respect diversity and a "right to self-determination".
|Jurisdiction||Physical integrity and bodily autonomy||Reparations||Anti-discrimination protection||Access to identification documents||Access to same rights as other men and women||Changing M/F identification documents||Third gender or sex classifications|
Sponsorship of same-sex partners
In 1985, changes were made to the Migration Act 1958 (Cth), after submissions from the Gay and Lesbian Immigration Task Force (GLITF), to create an interdependency visa for same-sex couples. The visa allows Australian citizens and permanent residents to sponsor their same-sex partners into Australia. Unlike married couples, immigration guidelines require de facto and interdependent partners to prove a twelve-month committed relationship, but it can be waived if the couple is registered by a state or territory's Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages. The temporary and permanent visas (Subclasses 310 and 110) allow the applicant to live, work, study and receive Medicare benefits in Australia.
LGBT asylum policy
Australia is a party to the 1951 Refugee Convention, which obliges member states to offer protection to those seeking asylum due to a well-founded fear of persecution in their home countries due to, among other things, their membership of a particular social group. Australia first recognised "sexual preference" as a "social group" for the purposes of refugee protection in 1992 in Morato's Case. In 2003, a majority of the High Court of Australia held that Australia should not withhold asylum from gay refugees on the basis that they could protect themselves in their home countries by hiding their sexuality. The decision making process for assessing LGBT asylum claims lacks consistency and relies on stereotypes such as whether the person attended gay clubs or joined lesbian groups.
In 2013, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd introduced a new asylum policy which meant that all asylum seekers arriving by boat would be sent offshore to Manus Island in Papua New Guinea for processing and resettlement. This included gay refugees, even though they face persecution under Papua New Guinean law with homosexual acts criminalised and a potential penalty of 14 years imprisonment. Asylum seekers are warned in an orientation presentation on arrival by the Salvation Army that "Homosexuality is illegal in Papua New Guinea. People have been imprisoned or killed for performing homosexual acts." This places them in the position of being required to declare their sexuality to be eligible for refugee protection yet liable to face persecution from other people and under local laws. Gay asylum seekers also face bullying, assault and sexual abuse on Manus Island from others, including officials and other refugees, due to their sexuality. Australia faces accusations from refugee advocates that it has violated its non-refoulement obligations under international law by exposing LGBT asylum seekers to such dangers. After the Supreme Court of Papua New Guinea in 2016 ordered the closure of Manus Island immigration detention centre on the basis that it breached constitutional guarantees of liberty, the Australian Government confirmed the closure but not what would happen to the detainees.
In practice, the protections for refugees seeking asylum on the basis of sexual orientation are limited, depending largely on invasive personal questions and the whim of the immigration officials involved. In 2014, then-immigration minister Scott Morrison introduced further changes which made it even more difficult for LGBTI refugees to prove the merits of their claim for asylum, such as narrowing the scope of protections and implementing a fast-track mechanism that may make it more difficult to gather necessary evidence to support an asylum claim. Australia's strict policy of mandatory detention and offshore processing for unauthorised boat arrivals has been criticised by non-government organisations including the ILGA, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, with particularly severe consequences for LGBT asylum seekers. The 2016 ILGA report on state-sponsored homophobia also describes the case of two gay Iranian asylum seekers resettled by Australia on Nauru who were "virtual prisoners" because they were "subjected to physical attacks and harassment by the local community, as they have been identified as being in a same-sex relationship", which was illegal at the time. In May 2016, Nauru decriminalised homosexuality by removing "carnal knowledge against the order of nature" as a criminal offence.
The Australian Defence Force allows LGBT service members to serve openly and access the same entitlements as other personnel. LGB personnel were effectively banned from the Australian armed forces until 1992; they could be subject to surveillance, interviews, secret searches and discharge from the military if discovered. The ban tended to be more strictly enforced during peacetime than wartime. Many homosexual personnel served in the military during the World Wars, the Korean War and the Vietnam War, with their comrades often being aware of their orientation and accepting of it.
In 1992, the Keating Government overturned the ban on LGB personnel after a lesbian Australian Army reservist complained to the Human Rights and Equal Opportunities Commission that she was dismissed on the grounds of her sexuality. A 2000 study found that the lifting of the ban on gay service had not led to any identifiable negative effects on troop morale, combat effectiveness, recruitment and retention or other measures of military performance. The study also found that the lifting of the ban may have contributed to improvements in productivity and working environments for service members.
By the 2000s, the ADF was seeking to actively engage the gay and lesbian community. An official defence contingent joined the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras for the first time in 2008 and the contingent marched in uniform for the first time in 2013. Unofficial support groups had marched in the parade from 1996, initially against the wishes of the ADF's headquarters.
The ADF also recognises "interdependent relationships", which include same-sex relationships, regarding benefits available to active duty members. This means equal benefits in housing, moving stipends, education assistance and leave entitlements. To be recognised as interdependent, same-sex partners will have to show they have a "close personal relationship" that involves domestic and financial support. The ADF also gives equal access to superannuation and death benefits for same-sex partnerships.
Defence Force policy was amended to allow transgender Australians to openly serve in 2010. The policy was updated following the advocacy of Bridget Clinch, who sought to transition from male to female while serving in the Australian Army.
LGBTI personnel and their families are also supported and represented by the DEFGLIS, the Defence LGBTI Information Service Incorporated. Established in 2002, DEFGLIS has facilitated reforms in the ADF leading to improved recognition of same-sex partners, development of policy and guidance for members transitioning gender, and enhanced education about sexual orientation, gender identity and intersex people.
Conversion therapy has a negative effect on the lives of LGBT people, and can lead to low self-esteem, depression and suicide ideation. The pseudoscientifc practice has long been performed in Australia. In the 1950s in New South Wales, men convicted of same-sex sexual activity would often be segregated and "medicalised" within the prison system. The patients were subjected to apomorphine injections and electric shocks. At the time, conversion therapy was supported by public officials, who viewed homosexuality as a "curable disease". There is, however, no scientific or medical evidence to support the use of conversion therapy.
Nowadays, reports suggest that conversion therapy is more "secret" and "insidious", and is run by religious groups or medical health practitioners. State governments have come under increasing pressure to enact legislation to ban and crack down on the use of the pseudoscientific practice. On 9 February 2016, for instance, the Health Complaints Act 2016 was introduced to the lower house of the Victorian Parliament. The bill created a Health Complaints Commissioner with increased powers to take action against groups performing conversion therapy; these powers ranging from issuing public warnings to banning them from practicing in Victoria. The bill passed the lower house on 25 February 2016, passed the upper house on 14 April 2016 with minor amendments and passed the lower house with the attached amendments on 27 April 2016. Royal assent was granted on 5 May 2016. The law went into effect on 1 February 2017. In May 2018, the Victorian Government announced tougher regulations to crack down on people practicing conversion therapy. The Australian Capital Territory and Western Australia are also considering enacting laws to crack down on conversion therapy. In May 2018, ACT Health Minister Meegan Fitzharris said "The ACT government will ban gay conversion therapy. It is abhorrent and completely inconsistent with the inclusive values of Canberrans."
In April 2018, Health Minister Greg Hunt came under fire after he called conversion therapy "freedom of speech" and "a different view". After much criticism, he affirmed that the Federal Government does not support conversion therapy. The Australian Labor Party supports banning the practice. In April 2018, the Victorian Liberal Party were set to debate a motion expressing support for conversion therapy at a party conference, but the motion was later removed from the agenda, following outrage from many Liberal politicians who called the motion an "embarrassment" and a "return to the 19th century".
At the 2019 federal election, the Australian Labor Party promised to introduce a national ban on conversion therapy if elected to government. In response, Coalition leader Scott Morrison said that while he opposed the practice, it was a matter for states and territories.
The Australian Red Cross Blood Service bans blood donations from men who have had sex with men (MSM) in the previous twelve months. Several other countries also have MSM bans ranging from three months to lifetime or permanent deferral. The policy was challenged in 2005 with the Tasmanian Anti-Discrimination Tribunal. Four years later in May 2009, the tribunal dismissed the complaint saying that it was "unsubstantiated". In October 2016, the Victorian Government called on the Federal Government to remove the 12 month MSM donation ban, arguing that the ban as it stood was "based more on discriminatory issues rather than on the science." The next national review of the policy was intended to take place sometime in 2018, but that didn't happen.
Positions of religious faiths
Australian faith communities vary widely in their official positions towards LGBT rights, including the legalisation of same-sex marriage. The official position of several major denominations of the Abrahamic faiths – Christianity, Judaism and Islam – is to oppose LGBT rights such as same-sex marriage, although this is not uniform across all denominations or clergy, with a number of religious leaders speaking out in favour of LGBT rights. Australian Christian Lobby, formed in 1995, and the Catholic Australian Family Association, formed in 1980, strongly oppose LGBT access to adoption and marriage. The official positions of religious organisations are not necessarily shared by their adherents, with a 2005 study finding that along with members of the Anglican and Uniting Churches, Australian Catholics were among the Australians most supportive of LGBTI people and their rights. Australia's peak Buddhist and Hindu organisations have expressed support for LGBT rights such as same-sex marriage.
With the advance of LGBT rights in Australia, religious opponents have increasingly used religious freedom arguments to justify continuing opposition against LGBT people on the grounds of their personal beliefs. Religious people in favour of LGBTI rights have also become more visible in the media, with the first interfaith pro-equality forum held in 2016.
In 2017, over 500 religious leaders in Australia wrote an open letter to the Australian Government to support marriage for same-sex couples, saying, "As people of faith, we understand that marriage is based on the values of love and commitment and we support civil marriage equality, not despite, but because of our faith and values."
The leaders of several Christian denominations, such as Roman Catholicism and the Anglican Church, have opposed LGBT rights. In 2007, then-Catholic Archbishop of Sydney Cardinal George Pell, stated the Roman Catholic Church continues to teach that sexual activity should be confined to married opposite-sex couples and continues to oppose legitimising any extra-marital sexual activity and any "homosexual propaganda" among young people. Similarly, former Archbishop of the Evangelical Anglican Diocese of Sydney Peter Jensen vigorously opposed homosexuality, stating that accepting homosexuality is "calling holy what God called sin." Their successors Anthony Fisher and Glenn Davies continued to speak against LGBT rights, particularly in the context of opposing same-sex marriage. The Exclusive Brethren have also advertised against LGBT rights, such as in the lead up to the 2006 Tasmanian election. However, a number of moderate Anglican leaders have called for greater debate, noting that Australian Anglicans are divided with many supporting LGBT rights. Further, Catholic priest Father Paul Kelly advocated since 2008 for the abolition of the gay panic defence in Queensland to protect LGBT people from violence. As a direct result of his advocacy and online petition, the gay panic defence was abolished from Queensland law on 21 March 2017.
Since 2003, the Uniting Church in Australia has allowed sexually active gay and lesbian people to be ordained as ministers, with each individual presbyteries given discretion to decide the matter on a case-by-case basis. The Uniting Church has allowed ministers to conduct same-sex weddings at their discretion since 2018. Other LGBT-affirming Christian organisations include the Metropolitan Community Church, Acceptance for LGBT Roman Catholics and Freedom2b for Christians generally. On 13 July 2018, the Uniting Church in Australia voted to permit same-sex marriage and approve the creation of official marriage rites for same-sex couples.
A number of individual ministers of religion have publicised their support for LGBT rights and same-sex marriage without their denomination taking an official position. Father Frank Brennan has published an essay in Eureka Street arguing that while religious institutions should be legally exempt from "any requirement to change their historic position and practice that marriage is exclusively between a man and a woman" drawing a distinction between civil law and the Catholic sacrament of marriage, and argued that recognition of civil unions or same-sex marriages in civil law may become necessary if the overwhelming majority of the population supported such a change. Anglican dean of Brisbane Peter Catt states that same-sex marriage is needed for “human flourishing and good order in society”. Baptist minister Carolyn Francis asserted that churches needed to remain relevant and welcoming, including support for LGBTI rights and same-sex marriage.
Buddhist support for LGBT rights such as same-sex marriage was confirmed in 2012 by the Federation of Australian Buddhist Councils, which represents laypeople, and the Australian Sangha Association, which represents religious leaders. Bodhinyana Monastery abbot Ajahn Brahm also wrote to Parliament in support of same-sex marriage, noting that the institution of marriage pre-dates religion and that legalisation would alleviate human suffering.
The Progressive Jewish community in Australia broadly supports LGBT rights, whereas the Orthodox branches remain opposed. Rabbi Shimon Cohen drew criticism for comparing homosexuality to incest and bestiality, and stating his support for gay conversion therapy. In 2007, the Council of Progressive Rabbis of Australia, New Zealand and Asia overturned their ban on same-sex commitment ceremonies. The North Shore Temple Emmanuel in Sydney began offering same-sex commitment ceremonies from 2008. In 2011, the Rabbinic Council of Progressive Rabbis of Australia, Asia and New Zealand announced their support for same-sex marriage under Australian law. This news was broadly publicised via a media release issued by Australian Marriage Equality on 25 May 2011. In May 2018, 5 months after the legalisation of same-sex marriage, Ilan Buchman and Oscar Shub became the first Jewish same-sex couple to marry in an Australian synagogue, the North Shore Temple Emmanuel in Sydney, after being in a relationship for 47 years.
The Australian Federation of Islamic Councils, a peak umbrella body for Sunni Muslim organisations, strongly opposed removing discrimination against same-sex couples in federal law. Chairman Ikebal Patel said such moves would threaten the "holy relationship" of marriage and the core values of supporting families. The Sunni Grand Mufti of Australia since 2011, Ibrahim Abu Mohamed, has maintained that Islam opposes what he has termed "sexual perversions" as a "religious fact". One imam sitting on the Sunni Australian National Imams Council described homosexuality as an "evil act" that spread diseases, while another stated that death is the Islamic penalty for homosexuality.
Nur Warsame is a gay imam in Melbourne who seeks to help LGBT Muslims reconcile their faith with their sexuality. In 2018, Warsame announced his intention to open an LGBTI-friendly mosque in Melbourne.
An Australian branch of the LGBT-friendly Muslims for Progressive Values was established in Australia by Professor Saher Amer from the University of Sydney and Reem Sweid from Deakin University who claim Australia is home "to some of the most conservative Muslims in the western world". Other Australian Muslims including Osamah Sami, and Muslims Against Homophobia Australia founder Alice Aslan have noted the need to address deep-seated homophobia in Australian Muslim communities.
Having previously been opposed, in 2015, the Hindu Council of Australia declared it would support same-sex marriage in future after a wide-ranging consultation process on the basis that it desired to support freedom and that the issue is not considered at all in Hindu scriptures.
Australian political parties are polarised on LGBT rights issues, with stronger support from centre-left parties such as the Australian Greens and the Australian Labor Party, as well as among moderate members of the centre-right Liberal Party. At state and territory level, most LGBTI law reform has been undertaken by Australian Labor Party governments. The number of openly LGBTI politicians has been increasing since the election of the first openly gay federal politician, former Greens leader Bob Brown, in 1996.
The conservative Coalition has mixed views on LGBT rights, but its senior partner the Liberal Party of Australia has fielded an increasing number of LGBTI candidates in federal elections, including the first openly gay man elected to the House of Representatives, Trent Zimmerman. After the 2016 Australian federal election, he was joined by fellow gay Liberals Tim Wilson and Trevor Evans, with gay Senator Dean Smith representing Western Australia for the Liberals in the Senate since 2012. Each differs in their level of activism on LGBT issues, considering themselves members of the Liberal Party first and foremost.
The Coalition's history on LGBT issues is mixed; during the 1970s, Liberal politicians such as John Gorton and Murray Hill worked across party lines in supporting the decriminalisation of homosexuality. In the 1990s and early 2000s during the leadership of John Howard, LGBT rights became part of the culture wars over social policy and were used as wedge politics to separate social conservatives from the Australian Labor Party. During the Howard Government, the Coalition strongly opposed LGBT rights. Describing himself as "somewhere in the middle" on the acceptance of homosexuality, Howard refused to support the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras and stated he would be "disappointed" if one of his sons were gay. He also stated that "homosexual liaisons" did not deserve recognition as marriages and opposed LGBT adoption. Howard was also accused by a former ComCar driver of plotting with fellow politician Bill Heffernan to force the resignation of openly gay High Court judge Michael Kirby by having Heffernan accuse Kirby of misconduct with underage male prostitutes, which proved to be baseless. Howard refused to apologise to Kirby and continued to support Heffernan. In 2004, the Howard Government introduced laws allowing same-sex partners to inherit their partner's superannuation. Later that year, the Government passed laws to prevent same-sex marriages being performed or recognised in Australia. In 2007, Howard stated that HIV-positive immigrants should be banned from entering the country.
Following the loss of government in the 2007 Australian federal election, new leader Brendan Nelson flagged the Coalition's support for removing legal discrimination against same-sex couples in all areas except marriage, adoption and fertility services. Nelson was replaced by Tony Abbott, who maintained a socially conservative approach to LGBT issues and stated he felt a "bit threatened" by homosexuality but supported "enduring" gay unions. In 2015, Abbott addressed the tension between moderate and conservative members over a potential conscience vote on same-sex marriage with a joint Coalition party room meeting, which resolved that the matter required a vote by the Australian public first and prevented its members exercising a conscience vote on the issue. Abbott was accused by Christopher Pyne of "branch stacking" the party room by calling a joint meeting with the largely socially conservative Nationals, as this reduced the prospects of a free vote being endorsed.
Abbott was replaced in a leadership spill by same-sex marriage supporter Malcolm Turnbull, who had to maintain the plebiscite requirement as part of his elevation to the leadership. Under the Turnbull Government, conservative members used the Safe Schools program and same-sex marriage as proxy issues to oppose the party's progressive wing after moderate Malcolm Turnbull's successful leadership challenge to Tony Abbott. Conservatives have prevailed over progressives in the party by denying a conscience vote in the Parliament on same-sex marriage and successfully advocating for changes and the removal of federal funding to the Safe Schools program.
Australian Labor Party
The Australian Labor Party's position has increasingly shifted in favour of pro-LGBTI policies, in part to counter the electoral rise of the Australian Greens, and in part through internal lobbying by LGBT supporters such as Penny Wong, Anthony Albanese and Tanya Plibersek. Under the leadership of Mark Latham in 2004, Labor supported the Howard Government's ban on same-sex marriage to appease its right-wing factions and avoid losing electorates in western Sydney. The party platform continued to oppose same-sex marriage and civil unions until the 2011 National Conference, which passed motions supporting same-sex marriage while allowing its politicians a conscience vote. By 2013, the Labor Right faction also supported same-sex marriage. Opponents of LGBT rights in the party gradually departed, with Senator Joe Bullock leaving in 2016 after party policy changed in 2015 to bind members in favour of same-sex marriage from 2019 onwards. At the 2019 election, the party announced a range of LGBTI policies including a national conversion therapy ban, removing exemptions that allow for discrimination by religious schools against LGBT staff and students, a dedicated LGBTI human rights commissioner, increased HIV funding and increasing legal protections for transgender and intersex people.
|Jurisdiction||Same-sex marriage||De facto relationships status||Registered relationships status||Equal age of consent||Anti-discrimination legislation||Adoption and foster parenting||Recognition of parents on birth certificate||Access to fertility (i.e. IVF and/or surrogacy)||Right to change legal gender without sex reassignment surgery|
|Jurisdiction||Expungement scheme implemented||Gay panic defence abolished||Conversion therapy banned||Hate crime laws include sexual orientation||Anti-vilification law||Right to change legal gender|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to LGBT in Australia.|
- Human rights in Australia
- LGBT rights in Oceania
- Same-sex marriage in Australia
- Category:LGBT rights activists from Australia
- Category:Intersex rights activists
- LGBT history in Australia
LGBT rights in Australian states and territories:
- The Northern Territory and South Australia allow adoption by a single person only if "exceptional circumstances" exist.
- The House had 125 members, but the Acting Speaker Gordon Scholes was ineligible to vote.
- This is not a true expungement scheme because the conviction is instead treated as "spent" if an applicant commits no crimes for a set number of years (see here).
- Northern Territory law states that a single person cannot be granted an adoption order unless "it is satisfied that, in the opinion if the Minister, exceptional circumstances exist that make it desirable to do so" (see here). Such a specific restriction does not exist in the laws of other states and territories, with the exception of South Australia.
- South Australian law states that a single person can only be granted an adoption order if "the Court is satisfied that there are special circumstances justifying the making of the order" (see here). Such a specific restriction does not exist in the laws of other states and territories, with the exception of the Northern Territory.
- Carbery, Graham (2010). "Towards Homosexual Equality in Australian Criminal Law: A Brief History" (PDF) (2nd ed.). Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives Inc. Cite journal requires
- Sheldrick, Drew (4 February 2016). "Overseas same-sex marriage recognition back in the spotlight". Special Broadcasting Service. Retrieved 4 December 2016.
- Wiggins, Nick (25 August 2016). "Transgender, intersex people call for birth certificate reforms". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 17 September 2016.
- "The 20 most and least gay-friendly countries in the world". Public Radio International. 26 June 2013. Retrieved 31 December 2017.
- Glover, Richard (4 September 2017). "Australia's strange vote on same-sex marriage". Washington Post. Retrieved 31 December 2017.
- "House of Representatives Committees". Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- Karp, Paul (7 December 2017). "Marriage equality law passes Australia's parliament in landslide vote". The Guardian. Retrieved 10 December 2017.
- "The Global Divide on Homosexuality". Pew Research. 4 June 2013. Retrieved 16 May 2014.
- "The 20 most and least gay-friendly countries in the world". Global Post. 26 June 2013. Retrieved 16 May 2014.
- "Sydney Things have changed enormously since the first Mardi Gras march was". The Independent. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- Star Observer, a community newspaper with the strapline "Australia's most respected LGBTI news source", retrieved 18 April 2014
- LGBTI people to watch in 2014, Gay News Network, 1 January 2014.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 7 June 2014. Retrieved 8 June 2014.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- "Sydney Mardi Gras Festival – Our Picks for 2014". Aussie Theatre. Retrieved 8 June 2014.
- "LGBTIQAP+ Mental Health Professionals Network Transformative Practice". National LGBTI Health Alliance. 5 April 2016. Retrieved 11 February 2019.
- "NHH07.!Boy!Wives!of!the!Aranda" (PDF).
- "Making The Modern Australian Homosexual Male: Queensland's Criminal Justice System And Homosexual Offences, 1860-1954". Crime, History & Society. 2007.
- Willett, Graham (15 July 2014). "Gay rights and gay wrongs". Inside Story. Retrieved 31 December 2017.
- "Dubbing homosexuals as criminals 'unjust'". The Canberra Times. 19 October 1973.
- "Hansard, House of Representatives, 18 October 1973".
- "Timeline: Australian states decriminalise male homosexuality". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 24 August 2015. Retrieved 4 November 2016.
- "Report No 74: Expunging criminal convictions for historical gay sex offences" (PDF). Queensland Law Reform Commission. 31 August 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 December 2016.
- Human Rights (Sexual Conduct) Act 1994 (Cth) s 4
- Croome v Tasmania  HCA 5, (1997) 191 CLR 119 (26 February 1997), High Court (Australia).
- Bernardi, Gus. "From conflict to convergence: the evolution of Tasmanian anti-discrimination law". Cite journal requires
|journal=(help) (2001) 7(1) Australian Journal of Human Rights 134 "Once standing was given the Tasmanian PLP Government did not wait for a High Court challenge and passed the Criminal Code Amendment Act 1997 which repealed the anti-gay provisions within the Tasmanian Criminal Code".
- "Age of consent laws". Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- Maddison, Sarah; Partridge, Sarah (2007). "How well does Australian democracy serve sexual and gender minorities?" (PDF). Democratic Audit of Australia. Australian National University. p. 10. Retrieved 29 November 2016.
- Burke, Gail (15 September 2016). "Queensland lowers anal sex consent age to 16, ending 'archaic' law". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 17 September 2016.
- "Expungement Scheme". Victorian Government. 1 September 2015.
- Florance, Loretta (16 September 2014). "Vic men charged with gay sex to have convictions erased". ABC News.
- "ACT government move to strike out homosexual convictions and discrimination". Canberra Times.
- "Spent Convictions (Decriminalised Offences) Amendment Act 2013" (PDF). Attorney General's Department - Government of South Australia.
- Alex MacBean. "Parliamentary Library Research Request". New Zealand Parliamentary Service│date=28 October 2016.
- Criminal Law (Historical Homosexual Convictions Expungement) Act 2014 (NSW).
- "Extinguishment of historical homosexual convictions". New South Wales Department of Justice. 24 November 2014.
- "Sentencing Amendment (Historical Homosexual Convictions Expungement Act) 2014" (PDF). Legislation.vic.gov.au. 24 September 2014.
- "Spent Convictions (Historical Homosexual Convictions Extinguishment) Amendment Act 2015" (PDF). Legislation.act.gov.au. 6 November 2015.
- "Notification Statement: Spent Convictions (Historical Homosexual Convictions Extinguishment) Amendment Act 2015". ACT Legislation Register. 6 November 2015.
- "Expungement of Historical Offences Act 2017". legislation.tas.gov.au. 21 November 2017.
- "Proclamation under the Expungement of Historical Offences Act 2017". legislation.tas.gov.au. 31 January 2018.
- "Criminal Law (Historical Homosexual Convictions Expungement) Act 2017". Legislation.qld.gov.au. 23 October 2017.
- "Proclamation—Criminal Law (Historical Homosexual Convictions Expungement) Act 2017 (commencing remaining provisions)". Legislation.qld.gov.au. Retrieved 14 June 2018.
- "Historical Homosexual Convictions Expungement Act 2018" (PDF). legislation.wa.gov.au. 18 September 2018.
- "Historical Homosexual Convictions Expungement Act 2018 Commencement Proclamation 2018" (PDF). legislation.wa.gov.au. 15 October 2018.
- "Applying for Expungement under the Historical Homosexual Convictions Expungement Act 2018 (WA)".
- "Expungement of Historical Homosexual Offence Records Act 2018". Northern Territory Legislation Database. 23 May 2018.
- "New Act Provides Pathway to Right Past Wrongs".
- Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "2071.0 - Census of Population and Housing: Reflecting Australia - Stories from the Census, 2016". www.abs.gov.au. Retrieved 27 June 2017.
- "Same Sex: Same Entitlements". Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- "Same-sex reforms". Archived from the original on 23 May 2015. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- Singerman, Deborah (7 October 2008). "Gay 'justice' suits pragmatic pollies - Eureka Street". Eureka Street. Jesuit Communications Australia. Retrieved 4 December 2016.
- "Same sex marriage – de facto v matrimonial – what is all the fuss about?". bnlaw.com.au. 4 June 2015.
- "Same-sex marriage and the law". Videos: The Sydney Morning Herald. 22 January 2017.
- "SSM: What legal benefits do married couples have that de facto couples do not?". ABC News. 21 September 2017.
- Elphick, Liam. "Do same-sex couples really have the same rights as married couples?". SBS News. Retrieved 15 September 2017.
- ":Centrelink recognises same-sex relationships". Centrelink. Archived from the original on 27 February 2009. Retrieved 30 March 2009.
- Wallace, Rick (3 January 2008). "Push for equal gay and de facto couples' rights". The Australian. Retrieved 1 May 2008.
- Dennett, Harley (26 June 2008). "Family Court Changes Afoot". SSOnet. Archived from the original on 6 July 2011. Retrieved 1 July 2008.
- Nader, Carol (2 September 2008). "Same-sex parenting rights push". The Age. Melbourne, Australia. Retrieved 2 September 2008.
- "Family Law Amendment (De Facto Financial Matters and Other Measures) Act 2008". Comlaw.gov.au. Retrieved 20 January 2011.
- "Marriage Act 1961 - Sect 5". AustLII.
- "Marriage Amendment Act 2004". Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- "Lower House votes down same-sex marriage bill". ABC News. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- Paul Karp (7 November 2016). "Marriage equality plebiscite bill voted down in Senate". Guardian.
- Byrne, Elizabeth. "High Court rejects ACT same-sex marriage laws". ABC News. Retrieved 12 December 2013.
- "Fact file: High Court decision on ACT same-sex marriage laws". ABC News.
- The Commonwealth v Australian Capital Territory  HCA 55 (12 December 2013), High Court (Australia).
- "Til Divorce Do Us Part". BuzzFeed. 1 July 2017.
- "Turnbull government kills same-sex marriage conscience vote, agrees to postal plebiscite". The Sydney Morning Herald. 7 August 2017.
- "SSM: High Court rules Government can run same-sex marriage postal survey". ABC News. 7 September 2017.
- Evershed, Nick; Evershed, Nick. "Full results of Australia's vote for same-sex marriage, electorate by electorate – interactive". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 15 November 2017.
- "Same-sex marriage bill passes Senate with day to spare before House of Representatives resumes". ABC News. 29 November 2017.
- "Same-sex marriage bill passes House of Representatives, paving way for first gay weddings". ABC News. 7 December 2017.
- "Same-sex marriage signed into law by Governor-General, first weddings to happen from January 9". ABC News. 8 December 2017.
- "When can you lodge your Notice for Intended Marriage?". ABC News. 7 December 2017. Retrieved 7 December 2017.
- "Same-sex marriage: How Australia's first wedding can happen within a month". ABC News. 13 December 2017.
- Patrick Williams (7 March 2018). "Heartbreaking story behind Australia's first same-sex marriage revealed". ABC News. Retrieved 7 March 2018.
- Julie Power & Goya Dmytryshchak (16 December 2017). "Australia's first same-sex couples say 'I do'". The Age. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 16 December 2017.
- Wordsworth, Matthew (12 June 2012). "Amended civil union laws retained in Queensland". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 31 December 2017.
- "Qld civil unions: Queensland restores same-sex unions". Brisbane Times. Fairfax Media. 3 December 2015. Retrieved 31 December 2017.
- "NSW to get relationship register". Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- corporateName=Commonwealth Parliament; address=Parliament House, Canberra. "Territories Legislation Amendment Bill 2016". www.aph.gov.au.
- "Norfolk Island Legislation Amendment Bill 2015".
- "Norfolk Island reforms".
- "Media Release: Call for Feds to recognise overseas same-sex marriages-Victoria praised for marriage initiative". Australian Marriage Equality. 12 December 2015.
- "Relationship register". Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages.
- "NSW to formally register de facto relationships". Western Advoacte. 29 December 2018.
- "Registry office relationship ceremonies".
- "Australia now has adoption equality". Human Rights Law Centre. 20 April 2018.
- "4102.0 – Australian Social Trends, July 2013". Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- "Commercial surrogacy: Push to make paid pregnancies legal, more accessible in Australia". ABC News. 30 November 2016.
- "Concern as Australians turn to Thailand for surrogates". ABC News. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- "Surrogacy for cash on rise". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- "Surrogacy laws may leave Australian babies stateless". ABC News. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- "Two dads and a surrogate create legal landmark". Daily Telegraph. 1 June 2012.
- "Human Reproductive Technology and Surrogacy Legislation Amendment Bill 2018".
- Discrimination, Fair Work Ombudsman
- Human Rights (Sexual Conduct) Act 1994 (Cth).
- Red Book plan a step towards gay marriage, The Australian, 15 December 2010
- Australian Parliament, Explanatory Memorandum to the Sex Discrimination Amendment (Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Intersex Status) Bill 2013, 2013
- Australia outlaws LGBT discrimination under national laws for first time, 25 June 2013
- Swan, Jonathan (15 January 2013). "Anti-gay rights to stay". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Cullen, Simon (16 January 2013). "Christian lobby rejects move to change exemptions". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Clark, Cristy (30 June 2016). "Anti-discrimination law exemptions don't strike the right balance between rights and freedoms". The Conversation. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Moodie, Claiare (12 October 2018). "Teacher who lost Baptist school job for being gay attacks 'taxpayer-funded discrimination'". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Karp, Paul (15 October 2018). "Liberals split over Labor bid to end religious schools' ability to sack gay teachers". The Guardian. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Karp, Paul (16 May 2016). "Greens promise to end religious exemptions to the Sex Discrimination Act". The Guardian. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Karp, Paul (7 January 2018). "Labor has 'no plans' to change law allowing religious schools to fire gay teachers". The Guardian. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Koziol, Michael (13 October 2018). "Ruddock review the booby trap that trips everyone up before backfiring". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Seccombe, Mike (15 September 2018). "The Liberals' religious right". The Saturday Paper. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Karvelas, Patricia (10 October 2018). "'He has a blind spot': Bitter MPs won't stay silent for long on religious freedom split". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Crowe, David (7 September 2018). "Scott Morrison vows to change laws on religious freedom but won't be a 'culture warrior' PM". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Topsfield, Jewel (9 October 2018). "Religious freedom review enshrines right of schools to turn away gay children and teachers". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- "Ruddock says religious freedoms report about narrowing, not expanding, discrimination laws". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 10 October 2018. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Crowe, David (14 October 2018). "Fairfax-Ipsos poll: Huge majority of Australians oppose laws banning gay students and teachers". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Singleton, Andrew (16 October 2018). "There's no argument or support for allowing schools to discriminate against LGBTIQ teachers". The Conversation. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Karp, Paul (12 October 2018). "Labor offers support if Morrison acts to stop schools from expelling gay students". The Guardian. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Norman, Jane (11 October 2018). "No school should be allowed to turn away a gay student, PM says". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Karp, Paul (11 October 2018). "Scott Morrison backtracks on law to expel gay students". The Guardian. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Grattan, Michelle (5 December 2018). "Political impasse stops protection for LGBT students passing this year". The Conversation. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
- Hirst, Jordan (9 April 2019). "Federal government orders review of religious legal exemptions". QNews. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
- Rhodes, Campbell. "8 hard-won rights for LGBTI Australians". Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House. Old Parliament House. Retrieved 31 October 2017.
- Maguire, Amy; Elphick, Liam; Hilkemeijer, Anja. "Ruddock report constrains, not expands, federal religious exemptions". The Conversation. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
- Shaw, Rebecca (18 May 2016). "It's time to axe the 'gay panic' defence so we can stop being gay furious about it". Special Broadcasting Service. Retrieved 3 December 2016.
- Winsor, Ben (13 August 2016). "A sordid history of the gay panic defence in Australia". Special Broadcasting Service. Retrieved 3 December 2016.
- Howe, Adrian. "Green v The Queen The Provocation Defence: Finally Provoking Its Own Demise?" (PDF). Cite journal requires
- Green v the Queen  HCA 50, (1997) 191 CLR 334 (7 November 1997), High Court (1998) 22(2) Melbourne University Law Review 466.
- Blore, Kent (2012). "The Homosexual Advance Defence and the Campaign to Abolish it in Queensland: The Activist's Dilemma and the Politician's Paradox". QUT Law & Justice Journal. 12 (2). doi:10.5204/qutlr.v12i2.489.
- "NSW Government ditches 'gay panic' defence". Star Observer. Retrieved 21 September 2016.
- Joshua Robertson (22 March 2017). "'Gay panic' murder defence thrown out in Queensland". Guardian.
- "SA to remove 'gay panic' murder defence". SBS News. Special Broadcasting Service. 5 June 2018. Retrieved 6 May 2019.
- Alcorn, Gay (13 December 2016). "The reality of Safe Schools". The Guardian. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
The initiative began after La Trobe University research in 2010 found that 61% of same sex-attracted young people (aged 14 to 21) had experienced verbal abuse and 18% physical abuse; 80% of the abuse happened at school.
- Ryall, Jenni (27 February 2016). "Safe Schools: Everything you need to know about the controversial LGBT program". Mashable. Retrieved 3 December 2016.
- Di Stefano, Mark (1 March 2016). "A Handy Reminder That Tony Abbott's Government Launched The Safe Schools Program". BuzzFeed. Retrieved 3 December 2016.
- David Alexander (30 July 2016). "Queensland Government stands by Safe Schools Coalition Australia". Star Observer. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
- Simon Leo Brown (26 February 2016). "Safe Schools: Chest binding photo removed from Christian website after complaints by young transgender man shown". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 19 September 2016.
- "Christian lobby groups claim 'radical sexual experimentation' is being promoted in schools". news.com.au. News Limited. 25 July 2015. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
- Cavanagh, Rebekah (2 June 2016). "Roz Ward suspended from controversial Safe Schools program". Herald Sun. Retrieved 21 September 2016.
- Brown, Greg (31 May 2016). "Jeff Kennett: Safe Schools funding lost if Roz Ward stays". The Australian. Retrieved 7 September 2016.
- Akerman, Pia (25 August 2016). "Indians join Chinese concerned about Safe Schools rollout". The Australian. Retrieved 31 August 2016.
- "Safe Schools program downsized after campaign by right-wing MPs and Christian lobby groups". SBS News. 18 March 2016. Retrieved 18 March 2016.
- Alcorn, Gay (13 December 2016). "What is Safe Schools, what is changing and what are states doing?". The Guardian. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
- "Safe Schools". Victorian Government. 1 November 2017.
- "Safe Schools Anti-bullying Initiative". South Australian Government. 1 November 2017.
- "Safe Schools Coalition ACT". Sexual Health and Family Planning (ACT Government). 5 October 2016.
- "Join Us - Is Your School A Member?". Safe Schools Coalition Australia. 1 July 2017.
- McAvan, Emily (12 August 2016). "Why Australia's gender recognition laws need to change". Special Broadcasting Service. Retrieved 12 December 2016.
- "Concluding paper of the sex and gender diversity project". Sex Files: the legal recognition of sex in documents and government records. Australian Human Rights Commission. March 2009. Retrieved 8 September 2016.
- "What do the same-sex marriage laws actually say?". News.com.au. 9 December 2017. Archived from the original on 9 December 2017.
People who changed genders were previously unable to change sex on birth certificates and other official documentation if they were married, as state or territory governments could refuse to do this as it could be seen as facilitating a same-sex union. Many transgender people were forced to divorce if they wanted to officially change gender. From December 9 , state and territory governments will no longer be able to block changes to birth certificates and other documents.
- Gleeson, Hayley (7 April 2016). "Gender identity: Legal recognition should be transferred to individuals, Human Rights Commission says". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 8 September 2016.
- "Information for those seeking a gender reassignment recognition certificate" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 29 July 2018. Retrieved 29 July 2018.
- "ACT to make it easier for transgender people to alter birth certificate". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. ABC News. Retrieved 4 July 2014.
- "Landmark Transgender Rights Bill Passes in South Australia, Nixed in Victoria". BuzzFeed. 6 December 2016.
- "Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2018". Legislation Northern Territory.
- "Northern Territory updates gender laws and removes 'forced divorce'". Out in Perth. 24 November 2018.
- "WA amends laws to end forced divorce for trans and gender diverse people". Out in Perth. 13 February 2019.
- "'Momentous night': Victorian birth certificate reform passed". The Age. 28 August 2019.
- "NSW delivers marriage equality for trans people". Human Rights Law Centre. 6 June 2018.
- "Queensland scraps law forcing married transgender people to divorce". The Guardian. 14 June 2018.
- "Justice and Related Legislation (Marriage Amendments) Bill 2018".
- "View - Tasmanian Legislation Online". www.legislation.tas.gov.au. Retrieved 9 May 2019.
- "Miscellaneous Acts Amendment (Marriages) Bill 2018" (PDF).
- "View - Queensland Legislation - Queensland Government". www.legislation.qld.gov.au. Archived from the original on 11 March 2018. Retrieved 11 March 2018.
- Alex, state political reporters; Humphries, ra; Coulter, Ellen (10 April 2019). "Tasmania becomes first state to make gender optional on birth certificate". ABC News.
- Counsel, Office of the Chief Parliamentary. "Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Amendment Bill 2019". www.legislation.vic.gov.au. Retrieved 28 June 2019.
- "Victorians set to win right to choose gender on birth certificates". ABC News. 18 June 2019. Retrieved 28 June 2019.
- "Justice Legislation Amendment (Access to Justice) Act 2018" (PDF).
- "Sex Affirmation".
- "Gender Reassignment Board". WA Department of Jusice.
- "Gender Reassignment Amendment Bill 2018" (PDF).
- Smith, Malcolm K.; Mathews, Ben (1 January 2015). "Treatment for gender dysphoria in children: the new legal, ethical and clinical landscape". Medical Journal of Australia. 202 (2). ISSN 0025-729X.
- Kelly, Fiona (2 September 2016). "Explainer: what treatment do young children receive for gender dysphoria and is it irreversible?". The Conversation. Retrieved 7 September 2016.
- Hewitt, Jacqueline K.; Paul, Campbell; Kasiannan, Porpavai; Grover, Sonia R.; Newman, Louise K.; Warne, Garry L. (1 January 2012). "Hormone treatment of gender identity disorder in a cohort of children and adolescents". Medical Journal of Australia. 196 (9). ISSN 0025-729X.
- "Health insurance and sex reassignment surgery". finder.com.au. 22 December 2016. Retrieved 4 April 2017.
- Lane Sainty (30 November 2017). "Transgender Teens Can Now Access Treatment Without Going To Court, Following Landmark Decision". BuzzFeed.
- Re: Kelvin  FamCAFC 258 (30 November 2017), Family Court (Full Court) (Australia)
- Dunn, Milly (1 December 2017). "Transgender youth can now access hormone treatment without court approval". The Conversation. Retrieved 9 October 2018.
- Telfer, Michelle; Tollit, Michelle; Pace, Carmen; Pang, Ken (2018). "Australian Standards of Care and Treatment Guidelines for Trans and Gender Diverse Children and Adolescents, Version 1.1" (PDF). Royal Children’s Hospital. Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne. Retrieved 9 October 2018.
- Pace, Carmen; Pang, Ken; Tollitt, Michelle. "Transgender kids get their own health-care guidelines". The Conversation. Retrieved 9 October 2018.
- "Resilient Individuals: Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity & Intersex Rights National Consultation Report 2015" (PDF). Australian Human Rights Commission. Retrieved 24 September 2016.
- Easten, Renee (February 2003). Protecting Transgender Rights under Queensland’s Discrimination Law Amendment Act 2002 (Research Brief No 2003/02) (Report). Queensland Parliamentary Library. ISBN 0 7345 2848 5.
- "Why intersex is not a gender identity, and the implications for legislation – OII Australia – Intersex Australia". OII Australia – Intersex Australia. 21 March 2012. Retrieved 24 September 2016.
- Larsson, Naomi (10 February 2016). "Is the world finally waking up to intersex rights?". The Guardian. Retrieved 24 September 2016.
- "Second Report". Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- "Statement on the Senate report 'Involuntary or coerced sterilisation of intersex people in Australia' – OII Australia – Intersex Australia". OII Australia – Intersex Australia. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- "Senate committee wants end to intersex sterilisation". Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- "Australian Parliament committee releases intersex rights report". Gay Star News.
- "Intersex advocates address findings of Senate Committee into involuntary sterilisation". Gay News Network. Archived from the original on 15 January 2016. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- Androgen Insensitivity Support Syndrome Support Group Australia; Intersex Trust Aotearoa New Zealand; Organisation Intersex International Australia; Black, Eve; Bond, Kylie; Briffa, Tony; Carpenter, Morgan; Cody, Candice; David, Alex; Driver, Betsy; Hannaford, Carolyn; Harlow, Eileen; Hart, Bonnie; Hart, Phoebe; Leckey, Delia; Lum, Steph; Mitchell, Mani Bruce; Nyhuis, Elise; O'Callaghan, Bronwyn; Perrin, Sandra; Smith, Cody; Williams, Trace; Yang, Imogen; Yovanovic, Georgie (March 2017), Darlington Statement, archived from the original on 21 March 2017, retrieved 21 March 2017
- Copland, Simon (20 March 2017). "Intersex people have called for action. It's time to listen". Special Broadcasting Service. Retrieved 21 March 2017.
- Jones, Jess (10 March 2017). "Intersex activists in Australia and New Zealand publish statement of priorities". Star Observer. Retrieved 21 March 2017.
- Power, Shannon (13 March 2017). "Intersex advocates pull no punches in historic statement". Gay Star News. Retrieved 21 March 2017.
- Sainty, Lane (13 March 2017). "These Groups Want Unnecessary Surgery On Intersex Infants To Be Made A Crime". BuzzFeed Australia. Retrieved 21 March 2017.
- "We welcome the Senate Inquiry report on the Exposure Draft of the Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Bill 2012". Organisation Intersex International Australia. 21 February 2013.
- "On intersex birth registrations". OII Australia. 13 November 2009.
- "Australian Government Guidelines on the Recognition of Sex and Gender, 30 May 2013". Retrieved 6 October 2014.
- "Interdependency Visa: Offshore Temporary and Permanent (Subclasses 310 and 110)". Department of Immigration and Citizenship. Retrieved 1 May 2008.
- "Changes to Same-Sex Relationships from 1 July 2009". Immi.gov.au. Retrieved 20 January 2011.
- Raj, Senthorun (8 June 2011). "Are You Gay Enough To Be A Refugee?". New Matilda. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
- Re Gustavo Carlos Saavedra Morato v the Minister of Immigration, Local Government and Ethnic Affairs  FCA 637 at , (1992) 39 FCR 401, Federal Court (Australia)
- Banham, Cynthia (10 December 2003). "High Court backs gay refugee claim - www.smh.com.au". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
- S395/2002 v Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs  HCA 71 at , 216 CLR 473, High Court (Australia).
- Bleakley, Paul (30 July 2013). "Rudd asylum plan sends gay refugees to PNG despite homosexuality ban". Australian Times. Blue Sky Publications. Retrieved 17 December 2016.
- Laughland, Oliver (23 September 2014). "Gay asylum seekers on Manus Island write of fear of persecution in PNG". The Guardian. Retrieved 4 December 2016.
- Ritli, Evan; Sandbach, David (31 July 2015). "Australia's cruel treatment of gay asylum-seekers". openDemocracy. Retrieved 4 December 2016.
- Carroll, Aengus (May 2016). "State Sponsored Homophobia 2016: A world survey of sexual orientation laws: criminalisation, protection and recognition" (PDF). International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association. p. 186. Retrieved 4 December 2016.
- Doherty, Ben (17 August 2016). "Australia confirms Manus Island immigration detention centre will close". The Guardian. Retrieved 4 December 2016.
- Raj, Senthorun (26 September 2014). "'Come out' to immigration officials or be deported? Gay asylum seekers will suffer under Morrison's new regime". The Guardian. Retrieved 5 December 2016.
- Brook, Benedict (18 May 2016). "International scorecard on LGBTI rights shows Australia lagging behind its peers". News.com.au. Retrieved 4 December 2016.
- Hasham, Nicole (5 March 2016). "Gay refugees on Nauru 'prisoners' in their home as Australia prepares to celebrate Mardi Gras". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 4 December 2016.
- Doherty, Ben (28 May 2016). "Nauru decriminalises homosexuality and suicide". The Guardian. Retrieved 6 January 2017.
- Riseman, Noah (24 November 2017). "Twenty-five years after the ban on lesbians and gays in the military was lifted, there is much to celebrate". The Conversation. The Conversation Media Group Ltd. Retrieved 24 November 2017.
- Smith, Hugh (2009). "Homosexuality in the Defence Forces". In Dennis, Peter; Grey, Jeffrey; Morris, Ewan; Prior, Robin; Bou, Jean (eds.). The Oxford Companion to Australian Military History (2nd ed.). South Melbourne: Oxford University Press. p. 264. ISBN 9780195517842.
- "Uproar as Govt ends forces' ban on gays". The Canberra Times. ACT: National Library of Australia. 24 November 1992. p. 1. Retrieved 26 July 2015.
- Belkin, Aaron; McNichol, Jason (1 September 2000), The Effects of Including Gay and Lesbian Soldiers in the Australian Defence Forces: Appraising the Evidence, archived from the original on 15 June 2016
- Marriner, Cosima (13 May 2012). "Twenty years on, great strides for full inclusion in the military". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 15 October 2017.
- Department of Defence (7 March 2015). "Largest ever Defence contingent to march in Mardi Gras parade" (Press release). Australian Government. Archived from the original on 15 March 2015.
- "LGBTI History in Defence". DEFGLIS. Retrieved 7 August 2017.
- Navy News Volume 48 No. 21, 17 November 2005, page 06
- Beck, Maris (5 December 2010). "Sex-change soldier forces army to scrap transgender policy". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Press. Retrieved 3 October 2016.
- ‘Treatments’ as torture: gay conversion therapy’s deep roots in Australia, The Conversation, 2 May 2018
- Tran, Danny (17 May 2018). "'Crackpot' gay conversion therapy targeted by health watchdog". ABC News.
- Glen Moret (9 February 2016). "Gay conversion therapy to be banned in Victoria". Gay News Network. Archived from the original on 25 August 2016.
- Medhora, Shalailah (21 September 2017). "'Ludicrous practice' of gay conversion therapy to be scrutinised". triple j.
- health, About the Author Jesse Jones Jesse is Star Observer's senior journalist His background is in public; Work, Sex; Health, His Special Interests Include; gender; writing, travel When he's not; movies, Jesse is into; Arts, Martial (21 May 2018). "ACT health minister commits to banning gay conversion therapy".
- "Libs and Labor vow to crack down (but not ban) gay conversion therapy". 29 May 2018.
- Koziol, Michael (15 April 2018). "'Dark recesses of the 19th century': Liberals slam party push for gay conversion therapy". The Sydney Morning Herald.
- "Australia's Senate passes a motion seeking to ban 'conversion therapy'". Gay Times. 16 September 2018.
- Tomazin, Farrah (22 April 2019). "'Dangerous and discredited': Labor pledges to ban gay conversion therapy". The Sydney Morning Herald. Nine Publishing. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
- Karp, Paul (24 April 2019). "Coalition takes tougher line on gay conversion therapy after Labor promises ban". The Guardian. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
- "Gays test Red Cross blood ban, by Erin O'Dwyer (October 9, 2005)". The Sun Herald. 9 October 2005. Retrieved 3 September 2007.
- "Kissing Qualifies as Sex". Sydney Star Observer. 23 August 2008. Retrieved 6 December 2008.
- Carter, Paul (27 May 2009). "Gay blood donor's complaint against Red Cross dismissed". News.com.au. Retrieved 29 May 2009.
- "Red Cross Donation Policy". Donateblood.com.au. Retrieved 20 January 2011.
- Angus Randall (7 October 2016). "Blood donor restrictions for gay men should be removed, Victorian Government says". ABC News.
- Giakoumelos, Peggy (6 November 2013). "Faith leaders split on same-sex marriages". World News Australia. Special Broadcasting Service. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
- Morton, Rick (2 July 2016). "Anglican priest defends Mufti's anti-gay stand". The Australian. News Corp Australia. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
- "Anger over rally to ridicule gay marriage". The Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. 16 August 2011. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
- "Catholics are least anti-gay: study – National – smh.com.au". Sydney Morning Herald. 26 July 2005. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
- Massola, James (5 July 2015). "Asia would see us as decadent if we embraced gay marriage: Barnaby Joyce". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
- Glasgow, Davidd (5 August 2015). "Gay marriage is not the foe of religious freedom". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
- Karp, Paul (18 November 2016). "'Marriage equality will give hope': the faith leaders backing same-sex union". The Guardian. Retrieved 19 November 2016.
- Greenwich, Alex (1 September 2017). "It's Great To See People Of Faith Also Have Faith In Marriage Equality" – via Huff Post.
- "500 religious leaders send strong message to Australia's PM". Gay Star News. 7 August 2017.
- "Pell backs discrimination against gays". Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
- Zwartz, Barney (3 February 2006). "Church imperilled by gays: archbishop". The Age. Melbourne, Australia. Retrieved 22 July 2007.
- Howden, Saffron (16 October 2015). "Churches' fight against gay marriage gains momentum". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
- Paine, Michelle (16 March 2006). "Church group challenged over 'negative' ads". News.com.au. Archived from the original on 20 February 2008. Retrieved 3 September 2007.
- Baird, Julia (12 October 2016). "Archbishop accused of silencing same-sex marriage supporters". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
- Australian Associated Press (11 January 2012). "Stephen Fry promotes Father Paul Kelly's online petition to end Queensland's 'gay panic' defence for murder". The Courier-Mail. News Limited. Retrieved 11 May 2013.
- Caldwell, Felicity (21 March 2017). "Gay panic laws pass Queensland Parliament, removing partial defence". Brisbane Times. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
- "HOMOSEXUALITY AND THE CHURCH" (PDF). Retrieved 25 September 2009.
- Rizmal, Zalika (15 July 2018). "Uniting Church says Yes to same-sex marriage ceremonies in Australia". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
- Nielsen, Ben (7 January 2019). "Uniting Church to continue to allow same-sex marriages following SA's deciding vote". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
- Busby, Cec (24 March 2016). "Discover gay affirming Christian churches and support groups in Sydney". Gay News Network. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
- Sandeman, John (13 July 2018). "Uniting Church to hold same sex marriages". Eternity. Australia. Retrieved 13 July 2018.
- "100 Revs". Retrieved 16 May 2014.
- Frank Brennan (11 July 2013). "It's time to recognise secular same sex marriage". Eureka Street. Retrieved 16 May 2014.
- Stiles, Jackson (6 July 2015). "Australia's second-largest religion is 'ignored'". The New Daily. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
- Potts, Andrew (19 April 2012). "Buddhists come out for equality". Star Observer. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
- Brull, Michael (25 August 2016). "Gay Abandon: News Corp Embraces Double Standards On Religious Homophobia". New Matilda. Retrieved 19 November 2016.
- Zwartz, Barney (9 July 2007). "Gay Jews ready to make their love kosher - National - smh.com.au". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
- "A synagogue welcomes LGBTI". J-Wire. 13 August 2015. Retrieved 17 January 2018.
- Narunsky, Gareth (2 June 2011). "Rabbis take up same-sex cause - The Australian Jewish News". The Australian Jewish News. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
- "Progressive Judaism backs marriage". Star Observer. 26 May 2011. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
- "Rabbis give strong support to same-sex marriage". Retrieved 16 September 2011.
- "Couple holds Australia's first same-sex Jewish wedding". The Times of Israel. 16 May 2018.
- Towers, Paula. "Oscar and Ilan make history at Emanuel Synagogue". emanuel.org.au.
- Jones, Jesse (3 May 2018). "Sydney Synagogue Hosts First Legal Jewish Same-Sex Wedding". Star Observer.
- Schubert, Misha (1 May 2008). "Battle lines drawn on gay unions". Brisbane Times. Retrieved 1 May 2008.
- Abboud, Patrick (2 May 2016). "Meet Australia's first openly gay Imam". The Feed. Special Broadcasting Service. Retrieved 6 November 2016.
- Lattouf, Antoinette (9 January 2018). "Gay Imam hopes to open Australia's first LGBTI-friendly mosque". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 17 January 2018.
- Lattouf, Antoinette (29 April 2016). "The secret mosques opening their doors to gay Muslims". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 12 December 2016.
- Sami, Osamah (17 June 2016). "I'm a Muslim, and we must face up to the homophobia in our religion". Mamamia. Retrieved 19 November 2016.
- Power, Shannon (29 February 2016). "Rainbow Muslims to make a statement in this year's Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras parade". Star Observer. Retrieved 19 November 2016.
- Sivadas, Deeju (15 September 2017). "Same-sex marriage: Australia's Hindu clergy group offers support to "Yes" campaign". SBS.
- Altman, Dennis (21 March 2016). "Fear and loathing reigns in Safe Schools and same-sex marriage debates". The Conversation. Retrieved 16 December 2016.
- Millbank, Jenni (2006). "Recognition of Lesbian and Gay Families in Australian Law - Part One: Couples". Federal Law Review. 34 (1): 1. Retrieved 12 September 2017.
- Pickering, Heath; Brenton, Scott (1 July 2016). "The rise of LGBTIQ politicians". Election Watch - Australia 2016. Melbourne School of Government. Retrieved 28 June 2017.
- Power, Shannon (20 June 2016). "Can you be Gay and a Liberal?". Star Observer. Retrieved 7 January 2017.
- Karp, Paul (5 August 2016). "'It's part of who I am': the gay Liberal MPs for whom the political is more than personal". The Guardian. Retrieved 7 January 2017.
- Johnson, Carol (12 April 2016). "Ideas for Australia: Consensus versus the culture wars – getting the balance right". The Conversation. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
- Saliba, Chris (21 July 2004). "John Howard's love and disappointment". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 7 January 2017.
- "John Howard's "Talkback Classroom" Interview on Triple J [August 24, 2001]". Australian Politics. Triple J. 24 August 2001. Retrieved 7 January 2017.
- "Howard attacks ACT gay adoption law". Sydney Morning Herald. 8 March 2004. Retrieved 7 January 2017.
- Stafford, Annabel; Schubert, Misha (9 November 2007). "Gay activists remind parties of promises". The Age. Retrieved 7 January 2017.
- "Gay marriage ban passes parliament". Sydney Morning Herald. 13 August 2004. Retrieved 7 January 2017.
- "PM accused of pandering to homophobes as election looms - PinkNews · PinkNews". Pink News. 11 October 2007. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
- "Nelson backs gay reforms". Sydney Morning Herald. 2 December 2007. Retrieved 7 January 2017.
- "Australian opposition leader Tony Abbott supports 'enduring' gay unions". PinkNews. 25 March 2010. Retrieved 20 April 2019.
- "Coalition reject free vote on same-sex marriage". The New Daily. 11 August 2015.
- Crowe, David; Owens, Jared (11 August 2015). "Same-sex marriage: Tony Abbott accused of Party 'branch stacking'". The Australian. News Corp Australia. Retrieved 18 September 2017.
- Murphy, Katharine; Chan, Gabrielle; Medhora, Shalailah (15 September 2015). "Malcolm Turnbull pressed on Nationals deal and marriage equality – as it happened". The Guardian. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
- Norman, Jane (10 June 2015). "Nigel Scullion joins Nationals colleague in supporting same-sex marriage". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporationn. Retrieved 16 December 2016.
- Taylor, Josh (2 March 2016). "Labor's 12-year road to Damascus on same-sex marriage". Crikey. Retrieved 25 April 2019.
- Johnson, Carol (1 June 2015). "Why Australia is so far behind the times on same-sex marriage". The Conversation. Retrieved 4 December 2016.
- Rodgers, Emma (1 August 2009). "Labor turns down gay marriage". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 16 December 2016.
- Rodgers, Emma (1 August 2009). "Gay rights, green protests disrupt ALP conference". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 16 December 2016.
- Park, James (3 December 2011). "Australian Labor party conference defies prime minister Julia Gillard to support gay marriage". Pink News.
- Altman, Dennis (4 October 2013). "Questions of conscience? The ALP, gay rights and same-sex marriage". The Conversation. Retrieved 16 December 2016.
- Myers, JoAnne. Historical Dictionary of the Lesbian and Gay Liberation Movements. Scarecrow Press. p. 96. ISBN 9780810874688. Retrieved 16 December 2016.
- Neilsen, Mary Anne. "Same-sex marriage". Law and Bills Digest. Parliamentary Library (Australia). Retrieved 16 December 2016.
- Sibthorpe, Clare (29 October 2015). "Homosexual acts can soon be scrapped from criminal records in the ACT". Canberra Times. Retrieved 23 October 2016.
- Winsor, Ben (20 September 2016). "A definitive timeline of LGBT+ rights in Australia". SBS Online. Special Broadcasting Service. Retrieved 25 September 2016.
- "LGBTI anti-vilification". alastairlawrie.net.
- Jahshan, Elias. "Advocates welcome final approval of NSW bill to extinguish historical gay sex convictions". Star Observer. Retrieved 23 October 2016.
- Brook, Benedict (26 March 2014). "NSW Government ditches 'gay panic' defence – Star Observer". Star Observer. Retrieved 25 September 2016.
- Sainty, Lane. "Now That Same-Sex Marriage Is Legal, States Must Abolish Transgender "Forced Divorce" Laws". BuzzFeed.
- Caldwell, Felicity (21 March 2017). "Gay panic laws pass Queensland Parliament, removing partial defence". Brisbane Times.
- Sainty, Lane (15 January 2016). "Some States Are Holding Out Against Erasing Historic Gay Sex Convictions". BuzzFeed. Retrieved 23 October 2016.
- Barber, Laurence (9 April 2019). "South Australia To Finally Scrap 'Gay Panic' Defence By The End Of The Year". Star Observer.
- Jones, Ruby (22 March 2017). "'Archaic and outrageous': Calls for SA to scrap gay panic defence". ABC News.
- Gerber, Paula. "Expunging convictions for gay sex: an old wrong is finally righted". The Conversation. Retrieved 23 October 2016.
- Potts, Andrew (28 August 2019). "Reason's Fiona Patten Introduces LGBTQI Vilification Bill In Victoria". Star Observer.
- "Racial and Religious Tolerance Amendment Bill 2019". legislation.vic.gov.au.
- "New Laws For Better Access To Justice". 27 March 2018.
- "Progress of Bills". www.parliament.wa.gov.au.
- "Historical Homosexual Convictions Expungement Act 2018 (WA)".
- Reviews of Laws and Rights
- Australian Human Rights Commission – Resilient Individuals: Sexual Orientation Gender Identity & Intersex Rights 2015
- Special Broadcasting Service – A definitive timeline of LGBT+ rights in Australia (Last updated 15 November 2017)
- History and Activism
- Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives
- Living Out Loud: A History of Gay and Lesbian Activism in Australia by Graham Willett, ISBN 1-86448-949-9, 2000.
- Mapping Homophobia In Australia Study
- Queen City of the South Melbourne Queer History radio series
- Support services
- Adoption and Parenting
- Gay Dads Australia Surrogacy Guide
- Same Sex Couple Adoption: The Situation in Canada and Australia Parliament of Australia
- NSW Law Reform Commission Report, 1988 – Artificial Conception: In Vitro Fertilization
- Same Sex Parenting by Paul Boers, Senior Associate of Dimocks Family Lawyers. FindLaw.com (April 2005)
- Marriage aside, what laws still discriminate against gays?
- Australia National Laws
- Federal and State Anti-Discrimination Law
- Legal Recognition of Same-Sex Relationships Briefing Paper 9/2006 New South Wales Parliament
- World conference on LGBT rights
- Interdependency Visa: Offshore Temporary and Permanent (Subclasses 310 and 110)
- Sinnes, G.R. Australia Encyclopaedia of Homosexuality. Dynes, Wayne R. (ed.), Garland Publishing, 1990. pp. 93–97