Katter’s Australian Party state leader Robbie Katter
Katter’s Australian Party state leader Robbie Katter

Gender laws destined to go down gurgler

QUEENSLAND'S Katter MPs will today introduce new laws to protect not just gender-specific language but also gender-specific bathrooms.

Katter's Australian Party has confirmed its contentious "he said, she said" Bill - the Anti-Discrimination (Right to Use Gender-Specific Language) Amendment Bill 2018 - will be introduced in State Parliament today, and will not only attempt to enshrine in law the right to use words like "he", "she", "guy" and "man".

State leader Robbie Katter said the Bill would also attempt to protect businesses and not-for-profit organisations from being discriminated against if they did not provide facilities and services such as bathrooms for members of people who did not identify as either male or female.

"We're concerned that community groups, sports clubs and small and large businesses are coming under attack from extreme leftist groups, and need protection," he said.

Under the changes, protections would be given to organisations without non-gender-specific facilities to stop, for example, an advocacy group running a targeted campaign against them over their failure to cater for those who do not identify as a man or a woman.

Those entities would also be protected from discrimination during a tender process if they only provided gender-specific services or facilities.

The Bill's explanatory notes say: "This amendment is required to protect entities from unfair treatment or harassment because of their decision to provide services and facilities that only accommodate persons who identify as either male or female."

Examples of protected words outlined in the Bill include male, female, man, woman, boy, guy, girl, him, her, he, she, Mr, Mrs, Miss, Ms, husband, wife, widow or widower.

"We're seeing more and more attacks on traditional values by extreme minority groups, and we need to take material action to ensure things don't get out of hand," Mr Katter said.

"We've seen this in all aspects of life, from university to work to government services and schools.

"This Bill does not stop anyone from using language that isn't based on traditional genders, however it protects those who want to use the traditional language."

The changes do not, however, provide that protection if the person using the gender-specific language is doing so in a discriminatory way, or to harass or intimidate.

The Bill will referred to a parliamentary committee after its introduction, before coming back to the House at a later date.

Labor is unlikely to support the changes, however, meaning even if KAP manages to attract LNP support its laws are doomed to fail.



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