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Marriage equality advocates say overwhelming support at the NSW Youth Parliament for a NSW Marriage Equality Act is a reminder to politicians that supporting the reform will increase their appeal to young voters.

Australian Marriage Equality national director, Rodney Croome, said,

“Overwhelming support for marriage equality from the NSW Youth Parliament shows how strongly young Australians are behind this reform.”

“It is a reminder to federal election candidates that supporting marriage equality is one of the most effective ways they can reach out to young voters.”

“The NSW Youth Parliament’s support for a state Marriage Equality Act is also a reminder that state legislation is the way forward for marriage equality should the federal parliament continue to ignore the wishes of a majority of Australians by blocking this reform.”

The NSW Youth Parliament today passed an Act allowing same-sex couples to marry under NSW state law. The 79 member lower house voted unanimously in favour of marriage equality yesterday and the upper house voted 40 to 4 in favour this afternoon. Youth Parliament delegates represent electorates all over NSW.

A Galaxy Research poll conducted in August last year found almost 80% of Australians aged 18-24 support marriage equality. Click here for more.

A copy of the Youth Parliament’s media release is below.

For more information contact Rodney Croome on 0409 010 668.

Author: Rodney Croome
Publication: AME Media Release
Date: 5 July 2013

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YMCA Media Release
For Immediate Release
Youth MPs say “aye do” to same-sex marriage
5 July 2013:

In a day dominated by Sydney casinos and Egyptian unrest, there wasn’t much room in the news agenda for hundreds of young people to have their say.

But they did make their voices heard.

Youth MPs from across NSW voted to legalise same-sex marriage and recognise ceremonies performed overseas in an emotional debate at NSW Parliament House.

During the session, run as part of YMCA NSW Youth Parliament, dozens of youth representatives shared their personal experiences of LGBTIQ discrimination.

In a particularly an emotional speech about a young boy who was bashed after coming out as gay, some ran from the chamber in tears.

When the Marriage Equality Bill 2013 passed unanimously in the Legislative Assembly yesterady with 72 ayes and 0 noes, cheers echoed through the house, the Speaker was swept into a group hug, and YMPs began a spontaneous rendition of Advance Australia Fair.

The Marriage Equality Report was passed today in the Legislative Council with 40 ayes and 4 noes.

“I’ve never sat through a debate that was so emotional, that was so personal,” said NSW state member for Monaro, John Barialo, who acted as Speaker for the Bill in the Lower House.

“That debate is genuinely what we need to get back to if we want to change policy and debate in this country,” Mr Barialo said, adding he would discuss the result of the Bill with his colleagues.

Shortly after the vote, the youth MPs were praised on Twitter by Federal Senator Sarah Hanson-Young, a highprofile campaigner for marriage equality.

“Fact is it’s our young Australians paving the way to equality and compassion,” she said.

“Youth Parliament does what our Federal Parliament couldn’t. Our current pollies could learn a lot!”

-ENDSAs part of YMCA NSW Youth Parliament, all completed bills and reports will be tabled to State Parliament for policy consideration.

For further information, contact Emma Dunn.
Media contact:
Emma Dunn
Communications Officer
YMCA NSW
P: 0421 811 785
E: emma.dunn@ymca.org.au

About the YMCA:
The YMCA is a vibrant, self-funding, not-for-profit charity delivering contemporary programs focused on family,
healthy living, developing young people and those less fortunate. The Y’s ability to positively impact people’s
lives, strengthen communities and respond proactively to many of today’s biggest social challenges is significant,
with its diverse programs and services delivered to over 40 communities across NSW in more than 110 locations,
generating in excess of four million visits per year.
About the YMCA NSW Youth Parliament:
The YMCA NSW Youth Parliament gives young people a voice in the running of NSW. The apolitical program, as
all programs within the broader YMCA Youth and Government field, aims to promote youth-led advocacy, active
community leadership and legal and parliamentary education. The YMCA’s commitment to developing young
people through programs such as the YMCA NSW Youth Parliament ensures the youth of today are able to
develop values and skills they can carry on into their adult lives.
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