The Same-Sex: Same Entitlements InquiryA community guide to the National Inquiry into Discrimination against People in Same-Sex Relationships: Financial and Work-Related Entitlements and Benefits

At least 20 000 same-sex couples in Australia experience systematic discrimination on a daily basis.

Fifty-eight federal laws deny same-sex couples and their children basic financial and work-related entitlements which are available to opposite-sex couples and their children.

During 2006, the Australian Human Rights Commission’s (then known as the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission) Same-Sex: Same Entitlements Inquiry travelled around Australia holding public hearings and community forums to hear, first hand, about the impact of discriminatory laws on same-sex couples and their children.

The public consultations, and some of the 680 written submissions received by the Inquiry, clearly describe the financial and emotional strain placed on same-sex couples who are trying to enjoy their lives like everybody else in the community.

This community guide sets out just a small sample of the federal financial and work-related entitlements and benefits which are denied to same-sex couples and their children.

The Same-Sex: Same Entitlements Inquiry finds that there are 58 federal laws which discriminate against same-sex couples and their children.

The Inquiry recommends simple amendments to those laws; just change the definitions describing de facto relationships to include same-sex couples.

The Same-Sex: Same Entitlements Inquiry also recommends changes to federal, state and territory laws to recognise the relationship between a child and both parents in a same-sex couple. This would better protect the best interests of the child.