Religious discrimination bill will not protect trans students from expulsion, Simon Birmingham confirms


The Morrison government will seek to protect gay students from expulsion without protecting trans students at the same time, a senior minister has revealed. On Monday Scott Morrison recommitted to bringing an amendment to prevent children being expelled “because of their sexuality”, but the latest government amendments fall short of protecting students on gender identity. Labor believes that the draft amendments it has seen would also not protect same-sex attracted students against other forms of discrimination, opening the possibility religious schools could punish them with measures short of expulsion. The finance minister and Senate leader, Simon Birmingham, confirmed on Tuesday that “the proposal is to repeal the exemption as it relates to sexual orientation, [but] it doesn’t go further than that”. Birmingham told Radio National the Australian Law Reform Commission would continue to examine the issue of discrimination on the basis of gender identity, meaning a delay of at least a further 12 months after the religious discrimination bill passes.

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