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20 May 2017

AMSA echoes the AMA’s call upon the Australian Parliament to end the protracted public debate on same-sex marriage by legislating for marriage equality.

The Australian Medical Students’ Association (AMSA) is the peak representative body of Australia’s 17,000 medical students and believes that embracing diversity and countering unjustifiable discrimination against the LGBTIQ community is a necessary and important step towards health equality for all members of society.

AMSA President, Rob Thomas, said: “Currently LGBTIQ people suffer poorer health outcomes than the rest of the population. The stigma and discrimination against sexual minorities plays a significant role in the higher rates of mental health issues that are observed.

“Further, it has been shown that discriminatory policies, such as those relating to marriage equality, have been shown to have negative health effects in lesbian, gay and bisexual people.  These populations are at greater risk of suicide, depression, anxiety and alcohol and other substance dependence.

“Sadly, youth are particularly vulnerable to psychiatric disorders as a result of marriage denial as it reinforces the stigma associated with their sexual identity.   

“As future doctors, there is only so much we will be able to do to help these people suffering if our society insists on marginalising them through these destructive policies.

“AMSA believes that the Government has a responsibility to reduce discrimination and stigmatisation that LGBTIQ people are subject to and this starts with marriage equality.”

“These are real people who are being harmed, not only by the legal inequality they experience, but by the prolonged public debate that has failed to be constructive.

“It is time for the Australian Parliament to give all Australians the opportunity to marry.”  

 

Media Contact: Isabella Gosper

Email: pro@amsa.org.au

Phone: 0416 816 830

 


Published: 20 May 2017