Icelandic PM asked to write to Australian counterpart about importance of equality

Australian Marriage Equality has sent a letter to Iceland’s Prime Minister Johanna Sigurdardottir asking her to help convince their own new female PM of the importance of marriage equality.

Australian Marriage Equality national convener, Alex Greenwich, says Prime Minister Gillard has let down the 60 percent of Australians who support same-sex marriage by opposing the reform.

On radio this week Ms Gillard said, “We (the Labor Party) believe the marriage act is appropriate in its current form, that is recognising that marriage is between a man and a woman, but we have as a government taken steps to equalise treatment for gay couples”.

“The 60 percent of Australians who support same-sex marriage will be deeply disappointed by Julia Gillard’s failure to grasp that full equality means marriage equality”, Mr Greenwich said.

“But we are still hopeful her position will evolve and remain keen to meet her and put our case for ending discrimination.”

As part of its campaign to change Gillard’s mind, AME has written to the Icelandic Prime Minister, Johanna Sigurdardottir, who recently married her same-sex partner, Jonina Leosdottir, asking the Icelandic PM to explain the importance of marriage equality to Ms Gillard.

“Our hope is that this leader-to-leader contact, especially between two ground-breaking, centre-left Prime Ministers, will show Julia Gillard that marriage equality is fundamental to the lives of gay and lesbian people and to a just society.”

“We have written directly to Prime Minister Sigurdardottir’s office asking her to write to Julia Gillard about the importance of marriage equality at a personal and social level.”

Mr Greenwich said it is too early to say if AME will resume its campaign of leafleting inner-city electorates.

“This will depend on the responsiveness of Ms Gillard to our request to meet her,” he said.

A copy of the letter to PM Sigurdardottir can be seen here (pdf): AME Letter to PM Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir