A re-elected Labour Party will continue to tackle discriminations still faced by members of the Rainbow community in areas ranging from surrogacy and adoption to blood donation.
“The Labour Party has a long history of being relentlessly proud and fighting alongside Rainbow whānau for equality and justice, and I will continue that when re-elected,” Labour Leader Chris Hipkins said.
“While other parties are using members of our Rainbow communities to incite fear and division this election, we are laying out our ongoing commitments to progress for our Rainbow whānau.
“All people, including Rainbow communities, deserve to have their rights and dignity upheld, and to live their lives freely just as they are.
“A re-elected Labour Government will modernise adoption and surrogacy laws to make them more accessible and ensure Rainbow people who want to form a family are treated on an equal basis as heterosexual couples. Currently, Rainbow families are required to adopt their own genetic children after a surrogate birth - requiring court orders, interviews, and home visits to determine suitability.
“We will also establish a Rainbow subcategory within New Zealand’s annual refugee quota to support people who are being persecuted because of their sexuality or gender identity to resettle in Aotearoa New Zealand. Rainbow refugees can face additional barriers, exclusion, and discrimination compared to other refugees.
“For blood donations, we will explore the latest evidence regarding Donor Behavioural Criteria alongside advocates, experts, and specialists; particularly the three month stand down period that currently applies for men who have sex with men. Any change will need a strong guarantee of safety, but countries like Canada and Ireland have changed their rules, so we should look at their evidence.
“Labour has relentlessly advocated for Rainbow communities in Government over the last six years. We introduced and passed legislation banning harmful conversion practices, which received near unanimous support. This was a major step towards upholding the rights and dignity of LGBTQIA+ and takatāpui New Zealanders.
“We made it easier for New Zealanders to have birth certificates that reflect how they identify with the changes to the Births, Deaths, Marriages, and Relationship Registration Act. This gives agency to people over their own identity, and makes a real difference for transgender, non-binary, takatāpui and intersex New Zealanders.
“Living fully in your own skin isn’t always easy for any of us at the best of times, and it can be particularly hard for our Rainbow communities. I’m proud of our progress we’ve made to support our Rainbow whānau and the commitments we’re making,” Labour Leader Chris Hipkins said.
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