3 November 2013
Beyond Blue & Australian Clinical Psychology Association join calls for reform.
NSW Member for Sydney, Alex Greenwich, has welcomed a new Reachtel poll showing 66% of NSW Voters support his moves to end anti-discrimination exemptions for private shools, while only 18% support status quo (poll available upon request).
Currently, NSW laws allows private educational authorities to discriminate against gay, lesbian, and transgender students, students with a disability, and female students who are pregnant.
Mr Greenwich said:
"It is clear that NSW voters want to protect the vulnerable students that the law currently allows private schools to discriminate against"
Mr Greenwich said many students had shared harrowing stories of discrimination with him:
"From threats of expulsion because of sexuality to sending students to a counsellor weekly to "fix their sexuality" and overt bullying in the classroom, the experiences some students are allowed to go through is appalling and it is time the law allowed these students access to the Anti-Discrimination Board"
Mr Greenwich's private members bill has the support of Labor, The Greens, as well as Beyondblue & Australian Clinical Psychology Association.
In their statement Beyondblue chief executive Kate Carnell said:
''Given the relationship between experiencing discrimination and harassment and an increased likelihood of developing depression and anxiety, it is important that discrimination and harassment is prohibited within legislation.''
The Australian Clinical Psychology Association said:
''Removal of the exemptions would reduce stigma associated with life changes that are outside the control of children and young people. This could reduce mental health risks,'' their submission stated."
Mr Greenwich said it was now time the Coalition joined the growing support for reform:
"A key role of government should is to protect vulnerable kids. It's clear this is what the community wants and expects from the O'Farrell Government".
Further information on the bill can be found HERE .
For further information contact Alex Greenwich on 9360 3053
Polling results and the full statements from BeyondBlue and The Australian Clinical Psychology Association are available upon request.