Australia to ban homophobia in sports

A draft national Australian anti-discrimination law could see homophobic abuse in the sporting world made illegal, but churches will still be able to legally exclude anyone they want

Australia to ban homophobia in sports
20 January 2013

Homophobic taunts by spectators, anti-gay on-field sledging between players and homophobic harassment in locker rooms could all be banned soon in Australia under the government’s draft Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Bill.

The bill would bring all current national anti-discrimination protections in Australia under a single law and outlaw discrimination on the grounds of sexuality and gender identity at a national level in the country for the first time.

Australian Human Rights and Equal Opportunities Commission president Gillian Triggs warned on Friday that players, coaches and spectators would all need to ensure they behaved reasonably.

‘Abuse on the sporting ground or abuse by a spectator would constitute, in an appropriate circumstance, harassment,’ Triggs told News Ltd newspapers.

‘It may be amateur, but it’s still in the public arena … If a coach were to act in a homophobic way, like abusing a player and calling him a `poofter’, and made life difficult in the change room so he’s totally demoralized, you would start to see that as either harassment or ultimately employment discrimination.’

The change would see homophobic abuse treated with the same gravity that on-field racial abuse is currently treated with in Australia.

However the Australian Government has given assurances to religious groups that their ability to legally discriminate against any person they feel is incompatible with their faiths will go unchanged.

This means that religious groups and businesses that they own such as hospitals, private schools, retirement homes and banks and insurance companies will continue to be able to fire and refuse to hire gays and lesbians and refuse to provide services to them.

HAVE YOUR SAY

MORE TOP STORIES

No thumbnail available

Pastor: Gay people are possessed by fart demons

Bert Farias, founder of Holy Fire Ministries, has begged gay people to not get angry with him for saying they are possessed by demons that smell worse than pigs
No thumbnail available

Music group pay tribute to gay soccer star Justin Fashanu in new video

UK group Elephants and Castles remember Justin Fashanu, the UK soccer player who made history, and enemies, when he came out as gay while still playing in the 90s
No thumbnail available

HomoLAB 86

Recorded on the day of Margaret Thatcher's funeral, the team discuss if lesbians are superiour to gay men.
No thumbnail available

Fifteen gay activists receive death threats in Brazil

Fifteen activists from Curitiba, state capital of Paraná, Brazil report they have been receiving constant death threats
No thumbnail available

Virginia governor says gays make inferior parents

Gov. Bob McDonnell advocates 'intact two-parent family made up of a man and a woman'
No thumbnail available

French and UK Christians plan ‘large protest’ against gay marriage

In Paris and London, opponents of same-sex marriage will march in a last-ditch effort against the bill on 24 March
No thumbnail available

11 things I’ve learnt in Japan

Travel definitely broadens the mind - after a recent visit to Japan, Gay Star Travel compiles a random list of stuff that we now know
No thumbnail available

Watch how this one mom came to love and understand her trans daughter

In an incredible video, a mother and her daughter explores what is gender?
No thumbnail available

Curious straight guy realises he's gay after watching How To Get Away With Murder

'When he touched me, I literally got chills down my spine. I loved it.'
No thumbnail available

St Paul's Cathedral to pay tribute to gay murder victims

Britain's new hate crime week to remember gay victims with a service at St Paul's Cathedral and vigils around the country