In 2020, during the push to abolish the outdated ‘gay panic’ defence, 38,292 people signed our petition with Equality Australia calling for stronger protections against hate crimes for all marginalised South Australians.
We called on our leaders to bring in new laws that require Courts to consider whether hate or prejudice towards a person or group of persons was a motivating factor in a crime and add prejudice-motivated conduct as a sentencing factor like it is in NSW, Victoria and the Northern Territory.
This week South Australian Parliament listened to our calls and made changes to the Sentencing Act that ensure our laws condemn prejudice, not condone it.
Here’s what Kelly, our Policy and Project Officer had to say:
“SARAA is proud to have worked with Equality Australia on this vital legislation. We give thanks to the past and present leaders in the LGBTIQA+ community who make changes like this possible.
As an intersectional organisation, SARAA is thrilled that the legislation covers hate crimes against not just LGBTIQA+ people, but also disabled people, religious people, people who are targeted because of their age, gender or cultural background. No matter what community someone belongs to, they are worthy of protection and support.
Attacking someone just because of who they are should increase your punishment, not explain away your actions”.