After months of increasing momentum in Australia, the freedom to marry may have gotten a huge push forward this weekend when Lara Giddings, the premier of Tasmania, announced that she supports marriage
for same-sex couples. Tasmania, an island state off the southern coast of the continent, would become the first region of Australia to approve the freedom to marry, and if legislation moves forward, it could prompt Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard to press the issue throughout the country.
“We will be leading the way for the rest of Australia to follow,” Giddings, 39, told a ruling state Labor Party conference in Hobart on Aug. 4, vowing to make the change this term. “There are nations across the world who have already taken this step, some of whom that you would not believe would have done this in advance of a nation like our own.”
“There is strong evidence that legislating for same sex marriage will provide a significant economic boost and create jobs for Tasmanians,” said Giddings, the youngest woman ever elected to an Australian parliament - at age 23 in 1996 - and the first female premier of the state.
Tasmania has led the push for marriage
and the LGBT community for years. It was the first state to formally recognize same-sex relationships and the first to recognize overseas same-sex marriages, and Tasmanian Labor and Tasmanian Parliament were the first bodies in the country to take steps to publicly endorse the freedom to marry. It's logical, therefore, that Tasmania would be the first territory to take the leap toward marriage for all couples.
"People understand marriage. They know what it means. We're just people who want to get married," one of the sons expresses in the video.
Freedom to Marry applauds Premier Giddings for making a move to protect same-sex couples and their families in Australia, and we are thrilled to see such growth for the freedom to marry around the globe.