Lawyers applaud the Queensland Government on bill to expunge historic homosexual convictions
Australian Lawyers for Human Rights (ALHR) congratulates the Queensland Attorney General for her proposal to introduce a bill to expunge historical homosexual convictions in Queensland Parliament today.
“This Bill appropriately enshrines human rights in Queensland,” says ALHR’s LGBTI Committee Co-Chair, Kathryn Cramp. “There is no place for historical criminal records that propagate the myth that two consenting parties who had homosexual sex are deviant or criminals.”
The Bill is fantastic news for Queensland following recognition that historically Queensland, and other states, have criminalised many members of the LGBTI community, damaging many lives. ALHR congratulates the Human Rights Law Centre, the LGBTI Legal Centre and other organisations for their ongoing advocacy regarding this issue.
Nevertheless, ALHR remains concerned that the age of consent is unequal in Queensland, effectively targeting the gay community. This inequality should be corrected to accommodate consenting parties to homosexual sex. Ms Cramp said, “the age of consent should be equalised to prevent ongoing inequality and stigma in Queensland’s criminal law. This is a discriminatory relic of the days when homosexuality was a crime.”
Such a change would have the effect of further expunging historical convictions involving parties aged 16 or 17 and prevent future convictions under this double standard.
ALHR also welcomes Annastacia Palaszczuk’s apology to the homosexual community for the harm caused by the criminalisation of homosexuality.
To arrange an interview with Kathryn Cramp, please contact Matt Mitchell on 0431 980 365 or firstname.lastname@example.org