The marriage equality debate has officially begun, and as feared, it has unleashed harmful anti-LGBTQI commentary. While our Prime Minister is asking us to not be ‘distracted’ by negative messages about lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer and intersex Australians and their families, it can be difficult to ignore them and push feelings of disappointment, upset and rage aside. Here are some great resources if you or someone you know needs a helping hand along the road to marriage equality.
A plebiscite is not we wanted, because allowing a person access to their human rights is not something that should be up for public vote. No-one should be denied the right to marry the person they love because of their gender or sexuality. Regardless, we now face a marriage equality plebiscite and we need to stand together, stay strong and keep each other safe.
You are loved and you are not alone
Check in with each other
If you know somebody involved in activism for marriage equality or you know somebody affected by the debate, give them a good old-fashioned call — or reach out however they might prefer — and let them know they are not alone. Sounds simple? It is, and you might be surprised how much it means to them.
Make self-care part of your daily routine
The fight for marriage equality has been long and many of you have been working in this difficult space for a long time. As we prepare for what is hopefully the last big push to win it, you need to take care of you. There are plenty of practical tips for staying healthy and resilient in:
- Our Self-care Guide for Activists: With hints for recognising and preventing burn-out.
- This fabulous poster from ACON: Why not print out a few for your office, school or community centre?
- The Rainbow Families Plebiscite Support Guide: With 10 helpful mantras to remember
Make use of Amnesty’s counselling service (EAP)
Amnesty provides access to a counselling service (EAP) for activists. Call 1300 361 008 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to make an appointment on the phone or in person.
Don’t be afraid to ask other experts
There are a range of organisations out there ready and willing to support you. Please know how important and loved you are, and reach out to one of these organisations if you need a helping hand: