The Green Party has launched a petition calling on the Government to create a Ministry for Rainbow Communities.
“We envision an Aotearoa where the diversity of Rainbow people is celebrated and our rights upheld. A Ministry for Rainbow Communities would provide a much needed voice across Government to help achieve that vision,” says Dr. Elizabeth Kerekere, Green Party spokesperson for Rainbow Communities.
“Many of our friends and whānau identify as having diverse genders, sexualities and sex characteristics. A dedicated Ministry would address the legislative barriers and institutional discrimination they still face on a day-to-day basis.
“Right now there's no natural home for any of the Government investment needed to improve the wellbeing of Rainbow people.
“A Rainbow Ministry would grow the capacity of the public sector to support, empower, and resource our communities. It could secure support for initiatives that help educate institutions, including Local and Central Government, about Rainbow issues, as well as ensuring schools are inclusive and safe, and workplaces are free from discrimination.
“We have achieved some amazing things for Rainbow communities over the last year. Just this week, we banned harmful conversion practices with the pressure of nearly 160,000 people who signed our petition last year. But there is much more work to do, and creating a Ministry for Rainbow Communities is the way forward.
“It took us until 2022 to ban conversion practices. We should not be willing to wait any longer to give our Rainbow communities a real voice in Government,” says Dr Elizabeth Kerekere.