Statement from Albert Kruger, CEO, Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras and Anna Brown, CEO, Equality Australia:
Like you, we were disturbed to hear of people being attacked after the Mardi Gras Parade on Saturday night.
To the survivors of these attacks, thank you for speaking up. We celebrate your strength. We hope you will find justice and healing, comforted in knowing that our community stands with you.
These attacks remind us once again that we still have a long way to go before we are all treated equally.
Verbal and physical attacks against us, based on who we are or whom we love, are not new. But they must end.
Everyone deserves the right to feel safe walking down the street. Not only in Sydney on Mardi Gras night, but in every street and in every town, on every night.
To LGBTIQ+ people who have experienced violence or abuse:
- Victims of violent crime can access support from NSW Victims Services on 1800 633 063 or victimsservices.justice.nsw.gov.au. Counselling, financial and other support may be available to you.
- ACON provides counselling and support services so anyone experiencing distress or needing assistance can contact ACON on (02) 9206 2000.
- QLife is also available to offer free phone or web-based counselling on 1800 184 527 or qlife.org.au, from 3pm to Midnight.
These attacks have strengthened our resolve to rise for equality, together. This is why the partnership we announced last week is so important. Together, we will ensure the legacy of the 78’ers lives on – to campaign together, and to rise for equality, every day of the year. You can rise for equality with us, by signing the pledge.
We will be following the outcome of these matters as they make their way through the courts, and let you know of any actions you can take to help.
If you experienced or witnessed any attacks on Mardi Gras night, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. With your permission, Equality Australia can put you in touch with support and pass on the information to the police.
Image: Road Rainbow – courtesy of Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras