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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 05 Hansard (Wednesday, 12 May 2021) . . Page.. 1383 ..


young people I went to school with who spent years not knowing themselves because the world was filled with Mark Lathams.

This motion speaks to the number of friends who have slept on my couch because that seemed, at that point in their lives, to be the safest place in the world for them because they knew that walking out the front door and going to work, school or back home would mean being subjected to more Mark Lathams. There is so much that makes me proud to be Canberran. What we, as a city, have done collectively for years to reinforce the values of diversity and inclusivity are models of global leadership that should make every single Canberran, irrespective of who they voted for, so proud about this city.

I am so proud to represent the ACT Greens, who have had, since their very beginning, an unequivocal and unashamed commitment to supporting the rights and freedoms of trans, gender diverse and non-binary Australians. I am proud to be a member of this progressive government. Where the ACT Greens and the ACT Labor Party disagree on certain issues of public policy has been highlighted this week, but what binds this government is a set of principles and values about how we treat people—most importantly, how we treat people who are marginalised, depressed and different.

I am really proud of that. I am really proud of the heroes of the trans, non-binary and gender diverse movement—not just those who have spoken in front of Mark Latham and bigots like him in the New South Wales state parliament, opposing the legislation they are currently debating, but those who walk out of their houses every day, wearing what they want, with the pronouns they have chosen and displaying a version of themselves that they are proud of, that truly reflects them. I am proud that they do that without fear or favour.

Mr Deputy Speaker, you and I get up every morning and we probably ponder the choice between two ties to wear; it might take us a couple of minutes. I cannot imagine—and frankly I do not think that I am strong enough to imagine—what it takes a trans, non-binary or gender diverse person in our community, each morning when they get ready to go to work or to go to school, to face the world. I am proud that in this city, in our workplaces, in our schools and in this parliament we continue to do everything that we possibly can to make it easier for those people. We are providing, in this city, an example of what every town and city in New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria, in this country and across this world should aspire to be.

Waving the flag and having social media posts with the trans flag might seem a little bit shallow to those who do not know or do not engage in this debate. It might seem a bit woke or a bit leftist, but it is so important, every day and in every way, that we find ways to show solidarity with, and pride for, those in our community who are different, those in our community who are unique and those in our community who are special. I was incredibly proud that the very first time I spoke in this parliament as an elected member, I stood at the lectern and spoke to this chamber to mark the International Transgender Day of Remembrance—a day every year when we stop to reflect on the trans, non-binary and gender diverse individuals across the world who have been taken from us. They were taken from us, not because of anything they did, not even because of who they were, but because of the, at best, ignorant and, at worst,


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