Same-Sex bill could override anti-discrimination laws

Dean Smith Will Introduce His Same-Sex Marriage Bill Within Hours Of A “Yes” Vote

Live updates: Aussie same-sex marriage vote results in

Australian lawmakers who fear a national survey will reveal that most voters want marriage equality are moving to wind back anti-discrimination laws to reduce barriers for people who would boycott gay weddings.

"At the end of the day, we are in support of getting a bill through parliament that will mean we can have marriage equality", Greens senator Janet Rice said.

"I don't believe Australians would welcome - and certainly the government would not countenance - making legal discrimination that is illegal, that is unlawful today", Mr Turnbull said.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has dismissed a conservative-backed same-sex marriage bill, warning sweeping religious protections that discriminate against gay couples will have no chance of passing Parliament.

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"The people are being asked if we should treat LGBTI people equally". Religious liberty and freedom of conscience are intimately linked.

Under Senator Paterson's plan, it would also allow any person or business to refuse to co-operate with the staging of same-sex weddings, protecting them from civil litigation under discrimination laws.

A private bill, proposed by West Australian Liberal senator Dean Smith, has been labelled the "starting point" by senior government ministers.

The bill would also have a no-detriment clause that would forbid the government and its agencies from withdrawing funding from an organisation that was opposed to marriage equality, professional organisations would not be able to refuse to register a practitioner who opposed same-sex marriage and public servants would not be allowed to be fired for sticking to their beliefs. That would involve overriding existing discrimination laws and creating special dispensation for people who held the "relevant belief" that homosexual relationships are unholy or immoral. If passed, this law would, for example, allow a baker to refuse to bake a cake for a gay couple, or students to "opt out of classes that conflict with their values", said Paterson.

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