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ID number:453050
Published: 04.06.2003.
Language: English
Level: Secondary school
Literature: n/a
References: Not used

The Federal Government still continues to discriminate in the area of superannuation in refusing access to financial benefits to homosexuals even though lesbians and gay men make the same contributions to superannuation as heterosexuals. The Superannuation Act guarantees benefits to members of the Commonwealth in case of invalidity or retirement. Also, benefits are payable to a surviving spouse in the event of a Commonwealth member's death. However, the definition of "spouse" in these enactments is gender-specific; it exclusively recognizes heterosexual relationships in which a man and a woman are legally married or live in a de facto relationship.
It can be argued that all these discriminatory laws in the NSW legislation violate Australia's international human rights undertakings as well as the majority of Australia's 7 core values which state that all Australian citizens must be regarded as equal under law, accept cultural (as well as sexual) diversity, commit to principles of tolerance and fairness and to the wellbeing of all Australian citizens, including members of the GLBT community. In other words, the NSW legislation infringes upon their right to be recognized equally, regardless of gender or sexuality.

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