Section: Simon Corbell, MLA | Media Releases
The ACT Government has condemned the Federal Government’s announcement today that it would recommend that the Civil Unions Bill be disallowed by the Governor-General.
ACT Attorney General Simon Corbell said Canberrans should be angry over the move.
“The Commonwealth Attorney General Philip Ruddock is on record saying that the states and territories have the power to make laws in relation to same sex unions,” he said.
“Due to its conservative social agenda the Federal Government intends to deny thousands of people who are in loving relationships in the ACT equality before the law.”
Mr Corbell said the onus was on the Federal Government to explain the reasons why it intends to disallow the legislation.
“The ACT’s Civil Unions Bill is not circumventing the Marriage Act, it is not trespassing on the Marriage Act or the laws of the Federal Government,” he said.
“Under the ACT legislation civil union is to be treated in the same way as a marriage under Territory law. This does not mean that a civil union is a marriage. In fact, the ACT Government when passing its Bill last month made amendments saying that they are not and cannot be the same.”
Mr Corbell said the ACT’s legislation would stand until the Federal Government overrides it.
“The Howard Government is treating Canberrans with contempt and Canberrans should be angry that the Federal Government is overriding a decision that has been taken by their own democratically elected Assembly.
“The ACT will not lie down and accept this, while the avenues for the ACT are extremely limited we will be pursuing them to the best of our ability.”
Statement Ends/ 6th June 2006
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