The city council of Melbourne, the capital of the federal state of Victoria, has put aside 21 million AUD for the LGBTI community.
The money is meant for the construction of a large LGBTI meeting and health centre (Pride Centre). LGBTIs can visit the centre for information on health, including AIDS prevention and care, support services, the consultation of barristers, and meeting facilities. The 21 million includes 6 million for advanced and additional services for everything that is of importance to transgender people.
According to the Premier of Victoria Daniel Andrews, Melbourne is doing what all other Australian states should be doing as well. "Everyone in our state should have the right to feel respected and safe, regardless of who they are," Andrews notes.
LGBTIs and their supporters are extremely pleased with the arrival of the Pride Centre, and are aware that similar Centres in large American states, such as New York and San Francisco, are extremely successful. Meanwhile, Australia still has not made any progress in the opening up of same-sex marriage.
The Australian High Court has declared legislation that made it possible for same-sex couples to get married in the Australian Capital Territory null and void. The Australian Capital Territory, in the South-East of the country, is self-governing and legalised same-sex marriages late October 2015. It became the first place in Australia where same-sex marriage was possible. The Australian government then challenged the law in High Court.
In 2004, the government excluded the possibility of same-sex marriage, and voted against gay marriage in 2012. According to the national government, the legalisation of same-sex marriage in the area surrounding the federal capital Canberra is contrary to federal laws. The marriages of the 27 couples that got married after the legalisation in October will become invalid.