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Multicultural voices in support of the Change or Suppression (Conversion) Practices Prohibition Bill 2020

Multicultural voices in support of the Change or Suppression (Conversion) Practices Prohibition Bill 2020

Wednesday 9 December 2020

Download the letter

Various multi-faith, multicultural LGBTQ+ and allied voices have written an open letter in support of the Change or Suppression (Conversion) Practices Prohibition Bill 2020 currently before the Victorian Parliament.

The letter is signed by:

  • Ghassan Kassisieh, Legal Director, Equality Australia and author of the ‘We’re Family Too’ report
  • Dr Judy Tang, Victorian Multicultural Commissioner and ex-President of Australian LGBTIQ+ Multicultural Council
  • Dr Maria Pallotta-Chiarolli, Research lead and founding member of Australian LGBTIQ+ Multicultural Council (AGMC); Gender & Sexuality Studies, Deakin University
  • Cedric Yin-Cheng, Chief Executive Officer, Australia & New Zealand Tongzhi Rainbow Alliance Inc (ANTRA)
  • Abanob Saad, Conversion Practice Survivor and Founder, Queer Middle-Eastern and African Christians in Australia (QMEACA)
  • Benjamin Oh and Molina Asthana, Co-Convenors, Asian Australian Alliance (AAA)
  • Budi Sudarto, Director, Ananda Training & Consultancy and Member of Queer Muslims in Australia
  • Ken Dumandan, President, Acceptance Melbourne LGBTIQ+ Catholics
  • Dr Reem Sweid, Founder and former President of Muslim Collective; Faculty Member, Alfred Deakin Research Institute for Citizenship and Globalisation, Deakin University
  • Nathan Despott, Brave Network
  • Michael Barnett, Co-convenor, Aleph Melbourne
  • Bhante Akāliko Bhikkhu, Rainbodhi LGBTQIA+ Buddhist Community


Media contact
Paige Burton
Equality Australia
paige.burton@equalityaustralia.org.au
0418 432 030

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The Aguda “Pride in the Livingroom” Project

The Aguda – The Association for LGBTQ Equality in Israel has organised a diverse series of international Jewish LGBTIQ+ speakers who will be coming to you live from their living rooms over the week of August 3-7 2020.

“Pride In The Living Room” was founded in memory of the 2009 “Tel Aviv Gay Center” shooting victims, and in memory of the Jerusalem Pride parade stabbing in 2015. The project arose from the need to share and expose the public to personal stories of the LGBTQ community. Through these stories, we as Jewish LGBTQ community members – can build inspiring and powerful connections between the LGBTQ community and the general public – ALL ACROSS the world, inside our local Jewish communities, in Israel and abroad.

Join “The Aguda” – the Israeli Association for LGBTQ Equality in Israel, in hearing the unique stories of our Global Jewish LGBTQ community, and help us in spreading our common values of love, acceptance, tolerance, and “Tikun Olam.”

Check out the speaker list and event details on their Facebook page here.

Speakers from Aleph Melbourne include founding member Shaun Miller and co-convenor Michael Barnett.

Join Michael at 7pm on Sunday August 2. Details here.

Join Shaun at 7pm on Thursday August 6. Details here.

Events will be streamed live on both Zoom and Facebook.

Strengthening our community, not virtue signalling | AJN

On July 3 2020 the Australian Jewish News published an opinion piece by Michael Barnett from Aleph Melbourne addressing in part some concerns from a May 15 AJN opinion piece criticising the Zionist Federation of Australia for participating in Pride March.

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Melbourne Jewish radio J-AIR finds March 30 broadcast was “contrary to Australian law” and “vilified members of the homosexual (and LGBTIQ+) community”

On May 5 2020 Melbourne’s Jewish radio station J-AIR published the findings of their inquiry into the March 30 2020 incident where they aired an interview stating “the pandemic is an exact designer drug … that will remove … problems … in the form of homosexuality and gays”.

The publication of these findings follow an unreserved apology from the station on April 2 2020.

J-AIR COMPLAINTS COMMITTEE FINDINGS

Approved Committee of Management on May 1 2020

Published results of J-AIR inquiry (forwarded to Michael Barnett via email on 5 May 2020).

1) The J-AIR complaints resolution committee, comprising J-AIR radio’s executive committtee, inquired into comments by Rabbi Mendel Kessin on The Tamar Yonah Show (30 March 2020) broadcast and podcast by J-AIR. Rabbi Kessin’s comment were originally aired on 24 March on the INTR program The Mystical Meaning of the Coronavirus with Rabbi Mendel Kessin. The complaints resolution committee found Rabbi Kassin’s comments were contrary to Australian law in that they vilified members of the homosexual (and LGBTIQ+) community.
2) An unreserved apology was issued immediately to the homosexual (and LGBTIQ+) community via Michael Barnett, who wrote about the TYS broadcast on the Aleph.org website on 4 April. The apology was distributed to The Australian Jewish News, J-Wire, JMedia and J-AIR’s Facebook group and page.
3) The apology was posted on the landing page of J-AIR’s website (j-air.com.au) and the apology in audio form was broadcast for several days following the original broadcast.
4) Michael Barnett, who brought the TYS broadcast to J-AIR’s attention, was engaged by telephone by the J-AIR assistant station manager.
5) Tamar Yonah was contacted for her comment. She noted in part: “Israel News Talk Radio is an Israeli Jewish station based on Torah values. We have on a variety of guests including rabbis who express different opinions on current or historical/biblical issues. Guests and listeners may, and do, hold very diverse views. Our live shows offer listeners to call in and agree, disagree, ask a question, or make a comment. Live talk-radio is very dynamic and is not a closed forum, and knowing that people express very diverse views, we have a disclaimer on our site stating that the many different views and opinions expressed on INTR do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Israel News Talk Radio or its staff.”
J-AIR carries a similar disclaimer hourly.
6) J-AIR will begin an updated education program for all presenters about Australian vilification laws, and advise them to remind guests before interviews to be wary of what they say.
7) Tamar Yonah has requested her program be replaced by other programs from INTR. J-AIR’s programming committee is looking into replacement programs.

Aleph Melbourne is pleased to hear that J-AIR are reinforcing anti-vilification requirements to their presenters, and also that the station is replacing the problematic Tamar Yonah Show syndication with alternative content.


Related coverage

Melbourne radio station J-AIR replaces program after homophobic broadcast | OUTinPerth

J-AIR SORRY FOR PODCAST | AJN

J-AIR SORRY FOR PODCAST | AJN

April 10 2020

Note: contrary to what is stated in this article, Aleph Melbourne co-convenor Michael Barnett did not contact J-AIR. The station approached Michael Barnett after independent concerns about the broadcast were brought to their attention.


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