Report: Current Research and Policy Recommendations for Men Who Have Sex with Men (MSM) Blood Donor Deferrals
This report presents a review of the latest research into the blood donor screening policies that require men who have sex with men (MSM) to abstain for a certain period of time before they can donate.
Taken together, data from current studies support the argument that abstinence-based deferrals are no longer necessary to protect the safety of the blood supply.
The findings show that a policy of assessing every individual donor for the safety of their sexual activity, regardless of their gender or the gender of their sexual partner, would not compromise blood safety, would increase the blood supply and would be a major step in removing discrimination from blood donation.Read more
In May 2018, we commissioned YouGov Galaxy to survey attitudes on special religious exemptions in faith schools. We chose YouGov Galaxy because it has a good reputation in Canberra and often used by major political parties to test opinions among voters.
The results found that Australians strongly oppose laws allowing LGBTI discrimination in the name of religion. Findings included:
4 out of 5 Australians oppose laws allowing discrimination against gay and lesbian students and teachers at religious schools
The same proportion oppose allowing discrimination against transgender students and teachers at religious schools
79% said LGBTI teachers should not be sacked if they marry a same-sex partner
Almost 80% said that religious schools which discriminate against LGBTI students and teachers should not receive government funding
In short, Australians not only oppose current LGBTI discrimination by faith schools, they want less of it not more. Indeed, Australians emphatically reject discrimination against LGBTI people in the name of religion more strongly than they supported marriage equality.
The full study is available here.
The National LGBTIQ+ Future Priorities Survey 2018 aimed to identify issues that are important to the LGBTIQ+ community, and their allies, that community groups and leaders could work on since having achieved marriage equality reforms.
The full report is available here.
Of the number of individuals eligible to participate in the survey (LGBTIQ+ person or ally, 18+ years, and Australian citizen or permanent resident), 2,662 (97.3%) went on to start the future priority questions. Of this number 2,323 completed the survey in full, resulting in an 87.3% completion rate (see Demographics for details).
1. Participants were first asked to rate the level of priority they gave a number of community and policy strategies within various domains. They were then asked to rank their high priority strategies in the order of which to address sooner. This allowed us to identify the most pressing issues within a pool of strategies already identified as being important. The following were ranked No: 1 within each domain. Where results differed between groups of participants, they are noted below. For the full list of strategies and ranks, refer to ‘Future Priorities’ within the report.
- A national ban on LGBTIQ+ “conversion” or “reparative” therapies (LGBTIQ+ participants)
- Equal rights and protections for all families in federal law including LGBTIQ+ people and their children (non-LGBTIQ+ participants)
- Funding programs aimed at improving LGBTIQ+ safety and inclusion in schools
Liaison with Federal Government Strategies
- Establishing LGBTIQ+ policy groups in federal government agencies such as health, education, the federal police, justice, and the Prime Minister’s department
Community Representation Strategies
- Greater funding for existing LGBTIQ+ advocacy, policy, and service organisations
Improving Rights and Conditions for Transgender/Intersex/Gender Non-Binary People
(Note: The top two items below are given equal ranking overall and are based on trans-gender, intersex and gender non-binary participants’ responses (with the latter category overlapping the former categories).
- Medicare funding for gender transition (1st priority for transgender participants)
- Legislative protection for intersex people against unnecessary medical procedures and procedures without their informed consent (1st priority for intersex and gender non-binary participants).
Interestingly, for the sample in general, a national public education strategy in relation to transgender, intersex and gender non-binary issues was ranked 2nd, whereas this was less pressing an issue (ranked 4th or 5th) for those who identified as transgender, intersex and/or gender non-binary (i.e., those most likely to be directly affected).
Federal Government LGBTIQ+ strategies
- Suicide and mental health strategy
Federal Government Policy Initiatives
- Reforming policies and practices for assessing refugees seeking asylum on the basis of anti-LGBTIQ+ persecution
2. On a separate topic, participants were asked to select their preferences for LGBTIQ+ representational methods. The majority selected:
- An organisation structure that guarantees the interests of smaller population groups (e.g. transgender, intersex, Indigenous and CALD, regional and rural, small states and territories) are not overridden by larger groups.
3. For the last question, which was on the best way to achieve a Human Rights Charter, most participants selected “Human rights entrenched in the Constitution” over “Human rights enacted by legislation”.
Detailed responses to the Future Priorities Survey 2018 questions, including demographic items, are available here.
Experiences of the marriage equality postal survey and views on religious exemptions: A report on a nation-wide study
A large-scale survey of LGBTI Australians has rejected exemptions similar to those in the Dean Smith marriage bill that allow discrimination in the name of religion.
The study found a slim majority of LGBTI people would rather wait than accept a compromised bill prompting advocates to call for the Smith Bill exemptions to be tightened and for there to be a no detriment clause for LGBTI people.
SURVEY SHOWS LGBTIQ AUSTRALIANS ARE OVERWHELMING OPPOSED TO A POSTAL VOTE
LGBTI Australians strongly oppose a postal vote on marriage equality.
That's the finding of a new survey of the LGBTI community.
The survey of 5,261 LGBTI Australians across all demographics was commissioned by Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays and just.equal, and conducted by social science researcher, Dr Sharon Dane.
It found almost 80% opposition to a postal vote which increased to almost 90% when respondents were informed it would be a voluntary vote that won't be binding on MPs.
The survey also asked respondents their preferred response to a postal vote, with 56.5% saying they oppose it but are also prepared to win it if it is held. Only 15% said they prefer to boycott the vote.
Equal Means Equal - almost 90% of LGBTIQ Australians oppose being subject to new forms of targeted anti-LGBTIQ discrimination
The current proposal to amend the Marriage Act includes provisions that would broaden anti-discrimination exemptions that would allow new ways to specifically discriminate against LGBTIQ Australians.
We asked the nations LGBTIQ community what they thought of these changes.
Unsurprisingly, almost 90% of the 6,352 LGBTIQ adult Australian respondents were strongly opposed to any proposal to make it legal for individuals and organisations to refuse their services to same-sex couples, based on personal conscience or religious belief when participants were informed the refusal of services would apply to only same-sex couples. Read the full report here.