A Bill has been passed in the House of Representatives ensuring new protections for sexual orientation, gender identity and intersex people.


The Federal Government is moving towards a  better protection policy for Australians in relation to  discrimination, through legislation passed by the House of Representatives today.
The Sex Discrimination Amendment (Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Intersex Status) Bill will make it unlawful to discriminate against someone on the basis of their sexual orientation, gender identity and intersex status.
“These new protections are long overdue and I’m delighted we are bringing them one step closer,” Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus QC said.
“The absence of these protections at the Federal level means that many members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex community have been victims of discrimination when accessing accommodation, healthcare, and everyday consumer services.

 The Attorney-General also announced the Government would look to move amendments to the Bill in the Senate to insert a qualification on the exemption for religious organisations for the provision of Commonwealth-funded aged care services. 
The Committee noted that “in some areas of Australia there is very limited choice of aged care service providers, and hence does not agree with the argument that individuals will always be able to choose a non-religious service provider should they so wish.”
Minister for Ageing Mark Butler, said the proposed amendments would ensure older couples and individuals would no longer need to worry about experiencing discrimination when accessing aged care services.
“While most aged care service providers are accepting of residents regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity or intersex status, we think there should be legal protection that ensures such discrimination cannot occur,” Mr Butler said.
“When such services are provided with tax payer dollars, it is not appropriate for providers to discriminate in the provision of those services.”
The legislation will also protect same-sex de facto couples from discrimination by extending the ground of marital status in the Sex Discrimination Act 1984 to include relationship status.