Cathy stands proud with LGBTI community and organisations
Posted June 16, 2015
CATHY McGOWAN (Indi) (13:33): Bucket loads of resilience are needed by lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex community members, their friends and families wherever they live but most particularly in rural Australia. Imagine the fear and distress that faces a young person who lives in a small country town or on a farm and who is confused about their gender or sexual identity.
Young people tell me of the barriers they face in their homes, schools and in the wider community. Everyone knows them and they may feel there is no-one to turn to, no-one will understand and, if they do not have family support, they often feel isolated and alone.
Today I am pleased to say that in my electorate of Indi there is help. Dominic Somers at Headspace in Wodonga co-facilitates a group for young people who are transgender or gender questioning. This group shares and discusses issues relating to their gender identity, creates friendships and support. Other support groups include WayOut at Gateway, Alphabet Crew—hi guys—Hume Phoenix, Albury Wodonga Parents and Friends of Lesbian and Gay and all the local community health organisations who provide support, information and advice, and who listen.
Today in this parliament, I am pleased to be able to say to Ivy and Isabelle, welcome. You belong here and I will stand with you to celebrate diversity and to fight discrimination.