Australia: Liberal senators dig in as divisions over LGBT students widen


Liberal senators have refused to agree to the protection of LGBT students from discrimination unless the current legal exemptions are replaced by other protections for religious freedom. Labor has claimed the move contradicts Scott Morrison’s promise to protect LGBT students. The shadow attorney general, Mark Dreyfus, has announced Labor will now introduce its own private member’s bill, after a split between the government and opposition was widened by the Coalition’s refusal to agree to a simple repeal of exemptions. In a Senate inquiry report on discrimination exemptions for religious schools, tabled on Monday evening, Labor and the Greens recommended that exemptions for religious schools in the federal Sex Discrimination Act be removed “to prohibit discrimination against students” on grounds including sexuality and gender identity.

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