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Question: Equality in the Regions

14 November 2023

The Hon. R.A. SIMMS (15:10): I seek leave to make a brief explanation before asking a question of the Minister for Regional Development on the topic of LGBTIQ equality in the regions.

Leave granted.

The Hon. R.A. SIMMS: In 2016 and 2017, the government of Victoria began a roadshow in rural and regional areas in their state as part of their LGBTIQ Equality Rural and Regional Program. The program is focused on, and I quote from the government of Victoria website:

…improving mental health outcomes, boosting population retention and economic inclusion, building capacity for communities to empower themselves, developing lasting networks between LGBTI communities, services providers and government agencies and improving broader community support for inclusion and identity.

The government of Victoria advises that the:

…roadshow visited more than 29 towns…engaging with local LGBTIQ+ communities, allies, business leaders, representatives of local service providers and local government.

An evaluation of the program found it had a positive impact on LGBTI people in regional Victoria with, and I quote from the website, 'LGBTI people reporting greater acceptance and displays of support in their communities.'

The government of Victoria is now developing a Rainbow Ready road map to respond to the needs of LGBTI people in the regions who were identified during the roadshow. My question to the minister therefore is: does she have plans to hold a similar roadshow to engage with LGBTI people in regional South Australia and, if not why not?

The Hon. C.M. SCRIVEN (Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development, Minister for Forest Industries) (15:12): I thank the honourable member for his question. I am not aware of any government proposals to have such a roadshow. Certainly, as a government we have done a wide range of measures in terms of increasing the opportunities for communication and collaboration with various groups within the community. I am happy to check with the Minister for Human Services in the other place to see if there are any such plans.

The Hon. R.A. SIMMS (15:12): Supplementary: will the minister consider the idea of a roadshow herself and, in particular, will she consider developing an LGBTIQ equality rural and regional program like her Victorian counterparts?

The Hon. C.M. SCRIVEN (Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development, Minister for Forest Industries) (15:13): Such a roadshow or policy or strategy would fall within the remit of the Minister for Human Services in the other place. She has certainly been very open to giving particular consideration to the needs of the community who are located in regional areas, for which I commend her. I will ask whether she has considered such a proposal to which the honourable member refers.


23 January 2024

In reply to the Hon. R.A. SIMMS (14 November 2023).

The Hon. C.M. SCRIVEN (Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development, Minister for Forest Industries): The Minister for Human Services has advised:

The Equality Project, a national LGBTIQA+ organisation, is currently conducting interviews with LGBTIQA+ South Australians with a goal of understanding people's experiences, connections to community, and identifying possible changes to better support LGBTIQA+ people. This project, which is funded by the Fay Fuller Foundation, has a particular focus on engaging with LGBTIQA+ people in regional South Australia.

The LGBTIQA+ Minister's Advisory Council recently had an update on the findings from the peer-to-peer interviews conducted to date as part of this initiative, including the unique needs emerging from LGBTIQA+ people living in regional and rural South Australia.

The findings of this project will be used to inform a potential roadshow like the ones that have occurred in Victoria and future actions the government can take to better support LGBTIQA+ people in regional South Australia.