May 13-19 is international Museum Week, and we've been taking part by exploring different aspects of our collection across our Instagram, Facebook and Twitter accounts.
The Museum Week theme for Thursday 16 May is ‘Rainbow’, so today we’re showcasing stories and objects from our collection that illustrate the Australian LGBTQIA+ community’s struggle for equal rights.
This page uses the term LGBTQIA+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Intersex, Asexual, and Others) throughout. There is no single community standard for this acronym, and this page has adopted the usual form used by government documents. The Museum recognises some groups consider the acronym inadequate, and does not wish to exclude any group of people from discussions of rights.
7 December, 2017 – Marriage equality
On 7 December 2017, the Marriage Amendment (Definitions and Religious Freedoms) Bill was passed in the House of Representatives, legalising same sex marriage.
At the time, we asked our social media followers to send us their images of the moments that shaped this democratic milestone. Here is a selection of them.
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Image supplied by Jessica Page.
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“Lost for words, thanks to all our family and friends for all your love and support. Never been so emotional in all my life! Today’s a day for everyone to celebrate” – David Burgan-Brine. Image supplied by David Burgan-Brine.
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The Ensemble Theatre in Kirribilli theatre changed its marquee lights from white to rainbow colours in support of the 'yes' campaign on 16 September 2017. Image supplied by Brian Lindsay.
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Image supplied by Nik Angelakis.
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Andrew Geoffrey and his partner at the moment the Marriage Amendment (Definitions and Religious Freedoms) Bill passed, 7 December 2017. Image supplied by Andrew Geoffrey.
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“I still can't believe it's real. After all these years... But we won. We won! Love won” - Roxy Oxlee. Image supplied by Roxy Oxlee.
Milestones in the fight for equality
From the blog
1828 – Execution for sodomy
1970 – Censorship laws challenged
1970 – Campaign against moral persecution
1972 – Gay Liberation political activist group launched
1975 – Homosexuality decriminalised in South Australia
1978 – Gay rights march held in Sydney to commemorate the 1969 US Stonewall riots
1982 – New South Wales passes laws prohibiting discrimination against homosexual people
1984 – Commonwealth Sex Discrimination Act 1984
1984 – New South Wales Parliament legislates to decriminalise homosexuality between consenting adults
1994 – The Australian Capital Territory’s Domestic Relationships Act 1994 gives same-sex relationships the same legal standing as heterosexual de facto relationships
1994 – The Human Rights (Sexual Conduct) Act 1994 legalises sexual activity between consenting adults in private throughout Australia
2017 – Same-sex marriage legalised throughout Australia