- The Guardian this morning reported that: ‘Anglicare refused to assess the Aboriginal aunt of an Aboriginal baby as a long-term carer because she was in a same-sex relationship and, with the knowledge of the NSW government, sought to have the baby adopted to a non-Indigenous couple.’
- The Children’s Court criticism of this approach is available at Re Daisy Logan  NSWChC 16.
- Discrimination against same-sex attracted carers is currently lawful under the Anti-Discrimination Act 1977 (NSW), with both a general religious exception in section 56(d) and a specific exception in section 59A allowing faith-based foster care and adoption agencies to refuse to place children with same-sex couples simply because of their sexual orientation.
- It was confirmed in 2010 that homophobic discrimination is allowed under the Act when PIAC represented a same-sex couple in an unsuccessful complaint against Wesley Mission Council for refusal to be approved as foster carers.
- In June 2023, Attorney General Michael Daley asked the NSW Law Reform Commission to review the Anti-Discrimination Act, but the Minns Government has not made any specific commitments to reform the Act’s broad religious exceptions.
Comments attributable to PIAC Director of Policy and Advocacy Alastair Lawrie:
‘That a government-funded social service provider like Anglicare can refuse to even assess an Aboriginal aunt of an Aboriginal baby as a long-term carer because she was in a same-sex relationship is a shocking example of legalised homophobia. It highlights just how out-dated our anti-discrimination law is in NSW.’
‘The fact that, in 2024, religious adoption and foster care services have special legal privileges to discriminate against same-sex couples is a shameful reminder of the urgent need for reform.’
‘Children should be placed with the best and most appropriate carers. The sexual orientation and/or gender identity of carers is irrelevant to that decision. Our anti-discrimination laws should be modernised to reflect this basic principle.’
‘The Attorney General has asked the NSW Law Reform Commission to review the Anti-Discrimination Act. This is a welcome first step. But the Minns Government must make a clear public commitment to bring these laws in line with contemporary community standards. Exceptions allowing wide-ranging discrimination against LGBTQ+ people must be removed.’
PIAC Media and Communications Manager, Danielle Buhagiar: 0478 739 280, [email protected]