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The Your Stories section is all about you! Please take a minute to tell visitors of the ILGA website about what LGBTI life is like in reality. Please submit your personal story and share your experience!

YOUR STORIES
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Readers Experiences

This is what people are saying about life for LGBTI people in AUSTRALIA...
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jato (user currently living in AUSTRALIA) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex straight readers on 28/07/2014
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falundafahao (user currently living in AUSTRALIA) posted for gay intersex readers on 09/08/2013 +4
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Saving gays, we are in action!
Dear friends,

I was shocked to know the news of President Obama’s announcement of gay ambassadors.

Master Li Hongzhi once said that homosexuality is not human behavior, it is incest, immoral and crime. The homosexual people lose their sensibility and are psychologically dirty and abnormal, they are bad people and will be first eliminated by God.
Homosexuals not only violate the standards that gods set for mankind, but also damage human society’s moral code. In particular, the impression it gives children will turn future societies into something demonic.


Do you want to see your own children to be homosexual?

Falun Dafa has for the first time throughout the ages provided the nature of the universe to human beings, which will help homosexuals find themselves again, and break out of that dark state of mind..
Join us now, and follow the works of saving gays from being eliminated till the end!

Master Li bless you!
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Leigh Johnston (user currently living in AUSTRALIA) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex straight readers on 12/03/2013 tagged with human rights, laws and leadership , marriage / civil unions, illegality of female to female relationships
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Hello ILGA friends, I wonder if you could help my 2 girlfriends gain some support and attention by posting the following link to your webpages and any social networking page you oversee. They are about to marry each other and have invited someone special to their wedding!!

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10152635449140554&set;=o.26012002239&type;=1&theater;&notif;_t=photo

The more attention we get the more exposure and chance of the girl's dreams come true! Please read. Thank you for taking interest, as this is in all our interests!

Kind regards,
Leigh Johnston
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Gina Wilson (user currently living in AUSTRALIA) posted for intersex readers on 20/01/2013 tagged with intersex
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We have moved to oii.org.au
By Admin on 15 January 2013.

Our website address is now oii.org.au, which we feel better reflects our status as an Australian not-for-profit and charitable organisation.

You can continue to reach us via oiiaustralia.com, or oiiaustralia.org, but you’ll avoid redirection time if you update your bookmarks!

A good selection of our links have been tested, but please let us know if you discover any strangeness.
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Gina Wilson (user currently living in AUSTRALIA) posted for intersex readers on 20/01/2013 tagged with intersex
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By Morgan on 19 January 2013.

As well as a travel document, a passport is one of the most important identity documents a person can hold. It’s important when opening a bank account, talking to a recruiter or employer, or renting or buying a property.

‘X’ passports have now been available for just over 10 years. The West Australian newspaper reported in ‘X marks the spot for intersex Alex’ on the first ‘X’ passport on 11 January 2003:

A QUIET trailblazer from Perth’s Hills has become the first in Australia and probably the world to hold a passport aknowledging that not everyone is male or female. Alex MacFarlane, 48, is intersex and wanted a passport recognising it. Women have a 46XX chromosome mix and men 46XY. Alex is 47XXY, a form of androgyny shared by about one in every 1500 to 2000 babies.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade initially baulked, saying its computers could deal only with an F or M in the sex field of passports. For Alex, choosing M or F would have been lying. “I should not have to commit fraud because of a department’s production inadequacies,” Alex said.

Late last year, after months of correspondence from Alex, and an inquiry from The WestAustralian, the department had a rethink, deciding to change its passport processing system to allow an X in the sex field. The X signifies unspecified sex or intersex and is the only other sex category allowed under International Civil Aviation Organisation guidelines for machine-readable passports.

Alex was born in Victoria, which allows the recording of “indeterminate” sex on birth certificates, as a result of campaigning by Tony Briffa.


In 2011, the Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade (DFAT) revised the policy to allow more people to obtain an ‘X’ passport, on the basis of a simple letter signed by a medical doctor. A board member of OII Australia noted this in a submission to the Senate Inquiry on the Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Bill, Exposure Draft. The submission, #579, reads:

In my life, the most difficult and, indeed, damaging experiences that I’ve had have been where people have incorrectly judged me on the basis of my legal gender or my presentation. When the current government broadened the eligibility for a passport with an ‘X’ sex descriptor, I took the option…

I have plenty of medical documentation showing my status, and my GP (who stood with me through diagnosis and who I’m immensely grateful for) was obliging in providing me the summary statement needed to obtain an ‘X’ passport.

The Passport Office states:

“this initiative is in line with the Australian Government’s commitment to remove discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation or sex and gender identity” – Australian Passport Office, https://www.passports.gov.au/web/sexgenderapplicants.aspx

It is therefore hugely disappointing to me that the current proposals in the Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Bill, Exposure Draft, explicitly reject protection for people, like me, who are intersex and who do not fully or “on a genuine basis” identify as one or other sex.

This is inconsistent with the recognition given to me by the Commonwealth. I don’t personally regard my passport as marking me as a member of a third sex or gender. I’m uncomfortable with that notion. Rather, I see it as an opt out of a system of belief that I can’t live up to.

This is also inconsistent with the bill’s intention to otherwise protect people who are perceived to have a protected attribute, or who associate with people who possess such attributes.

For the first time in my life, I can understand what trans people go through when they change their documentation. Obtaining an X passport is very different in many ways – I haven’t changed my appearance or name. I use the same (male) toilet as before. My need for testosterone hasn’t changed and, in fact, I needn’t have gone through any of the surgical experiences I have had to be able to qualify for the passport.

Nevertheless, the passport presents some challenges…

The current proposals do not live up to the government’s stated intent of removing discrimination.

The explicit lack of inclusion of people who do not identify as male or female would mean that, if/when people like Alex and this OII Australia member are directly discriminated against, we have no legal recourse.

This is an issue that we will be raising with the Senate Inquiry during oral hearings in Sydney on Thursday 24 January.

More information

Direct link to “name withheld” submission, #579 (PDF)
Direct link to OII Australia’s submission, #12 (PDF)
All submissions to the Senate Inquiry
Our FAQ on ‘X’ passports
The current (and undated) DFAT Policy on ‘X’ passports
‘X marks the spot for intersex Alex’, The West Australian press report on Alex MacFarlane (PDF)
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(user currently living in UNITED STATES) posted for intersex readers on 19/12/2011
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OII Chairperson and OII USA director Hida Viloria’s letter to US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton asking for full intersex inclusion in White House LGBT initiatives

http://oiiaustralia.com/15981/oii-chairperson-oii-usa-director-hida-viloria-letter-us-secretary-state-hillary-clinton-intersex-inclusion-white-house-lgbt-equality-lgbti/

Intersex people - some 4% of the global population - remain amongst the most discriminated-against of all human beings. Intersex newborns are killed in parts of Africa and Asia.

Intersex babies whose genitalia do not closely resemble medicine’s ideal of the perfect male or female genitals are subjected to nonconsensual cosmetic surgery on their most intimate, private body parts.

Intersex people of all ages are denied fundamental human rights and have no protection against discrimination.

The motivation for these abuses? Homophobia. As with the rest of the LGBTI community, homophobia causes intersex people enormous suffering whether they are, in fact, attracted to their own apparent sex or not.

Hida Viloria of Organisation Intersex International - the world’s largest organization of intersex people - is appealing to US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to fully and equally include intersex people in the State Department and White House’s global human rights work.
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Gina Wilson (user currently living in AUSTRALIA) posted for intersex readers on 30/09/2011 tagged with intersex
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In an act of breathtaking hypocrisy the World Professional Association of Transgender Health (WPATH) has released pathologizing guidelines for the treatment of intersex children and adults who reject their birth assignments.

WPATH has for many years been considering the effects of pathologizing language on the mental health of trans individuals. The diagnosis of Gender Identity Disorder (GID) was considered especially unhelpful as it categorized their natural differences as a mental illness.

In an effort to move away from concepts that contributed to the problems rather than easing them WPATH has revised its Standards of Care (SOC) to include less pathologizing language and treatments that focus on medical needs rather than pathologizing and characterizing trans as a mental health problem.

With breathtaking arrogance and hypocrisy, WPATH then reclassifies intersex as people with Disorders of Sex Development (DSD) and see those of us who reject our birth assignments as being in need of the counsel of a mental health professional.

WPATH does this without the input or inclusion of a single intersex person. Indeed the WPATH membership requirements preclude being intersex as a reason for belonging to this organization.

Not only are intersex people excluded from membership of WPATH, we are pathologized without our contribution and without WPATH seeking any intersex input whatsoever.

WPATH would not formulate a Standards of Care for trans people without considerable trans inclusion and widespread trans consultation. That WPATH is prepared to do what they have done to intersex people shows the complete misunderstanding that trans professionals have in respect of intersex and their disregard for both our rights and for our wellbeing.

Gina Wilson
President, Organisation Intersex International Australia Limited
Sydney, Australia
oiiaustralia.com
oiiaustralia@bigpond.com
+61 (0)418 290 336
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Lloyd (user currently living in AUSTRALIA) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex readers in response to this story on 16/09/2011
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Also, sorry, I meant to add my email address for support. I live in Australia and will try to respond to all people for support. boogienights@mail.com. Please note: this is not a hoax, and I cannot send any money! It is simply for people who want to have correspondence with someone for support regarding issues with sexuality. Thanks, Lloyd
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I am a homosexual male, living in Australia. I have been fortunate to live in a country where I can be as open about my sexuality as I like. Reconcilling this with my faith, however, has not been easy. Not only do I consider myself gay, but also deeply religious. My Christian faith has been my strength in times of despair and worry, and I cannot imagine ever not believing. What breaks my heart is that less and less people are practicing their faith these days, or even HAVE faith. Is it really becoming that foreign or strange, or even corny, to believe in God and sing His praises in church every Sunday? Of course, practicing one's faith isn't just a once-a-week thing, it's an all-the-time thing. Making such a huge commitment is a scary thing, but I think it's one we all need to make. There are so many gay christians out there who are comfortable about practicing their faith. So go on... take that leap of faith today!
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Gina Wilson (user currently living in AUSTRALIA) posted for intersex readers on 19/05/2010 tagged with intersex
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OII Australia has completed it's incorporation . We now have an Australian Company Number (ACN) 143 506 594.

We welcome new members to our organisation. Full members must be Intersex. We have Associate members and organisation membership for those who are nopt Intersex but wish to support our push for full inclusion in Human Rights legeslation.
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Angela (user currently living in AUSTRALIA) posted for intersex readers on 15/04/2010 tagged with intersex, at the work place, hate crime and violence prevention, health, human rights, laws and leadership , marriage / civil unions
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I wish to thank ILGA for that rarest of rare things - the inclusion of intersex people in its activities on behalf of equality and human rights.

It is wonderful to see that ILGA uses the inclusive acronym LGBTI (hopefully) throughout its website and in all its literature and communications.

Why am I being so full of praise for the simple inclusion of a group human beings whose prevalence in all parts of the world is between 1:60 to 1:100, and closer to 1:25 to 1:50 in some parts of the world?

Because outside of ILGA intersex people are habitually, routinely EXCLUDED from almost ALL efforts to achieve equality, human rights, protection against discrimination and vilification, and the right to patient-centred healthcare, EVEN WHEN WE SPECIFICALLY ASK TO BE INCLUDED.

Exclusion of intersex from reform efforts around the world is standard practice.

The use of the acronyms LGBT instead of LGBTI in the LGBTI media is standard practice even when including token intersex content.

The use of LGBT instead of LGBTI by global and national equality and human rights efforts and organizations is standard practice.

Every use of LGBT instead of LGBTI is a red flag waved in the face of intersex people telling us that "we do not want you" and "you are not good enough for us". In effect, intersex people are legally less-than-human, subhuman,

Exclusion of intersex from major law reform and legal bills on behalf of equality, human rights and even hate crimes acts is standard practice.

Intersex is excluded from the UK's Equality Bill.

Intersex is excluded from ENDA in the USA.

Intersex is excluded from the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act in the USA.

Intersex is excluded from the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers statement on sexual orientation and gender identity.

Intersex is excluded from IDAHO, the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia.

Intersex is excluded from the Human Rights Campaign in the USA.

Intersex is excluded from national health reforms.

Intersex is excluded from national censuses.

Intersex is excluded from the LGBT National Equality March and related organizations in the US.

Intersex exclusion is such a universally standard practice that we frequently use two related tags on the OII Australia website - "intersex exclusion" and "intersex-exclusive".

And that is just the merest tip of the iceberg.

Genital cutting is practiced against intersex newborns to make our genitals cosmetically resemble those of non-intersex newborns, without our permission, at enormous cost to our lives.

Genital cutting is also known as IGM - Intersex Genital Mutilation, as well as non-consensual experimental cosmetic genital surgery. These newborns are also sterilized and are required to take expensive, often hard-to-obtain HRT - hormone replacement therapy - for the rest of their lives or suffer potentially fatal ill health.

This persecution is a form of genocide and it is global.

And that, as I say, is just the merest tip of the iceberg.

Some relevant reading for you:

What is Intersex?
http://oiiaustralia.com/about/intersex/

On Genital Cutting
http://oiiaustralia.com/about/genital-cutting/

OII Petition to International Olympic Committe regarding Intersex Athletes
http://oiiaustralia.com/oii-petition-international-olympic-committe-intersex-athletes/

Medical “Normalisation” of Intersex Newborns… Why Not?
http://oiiaustralia.com/medical-normalisation-intersex-newborns/

Intersex Excluded from UK Equality Bill?
http://oiiaustralia.com/intersex-excluded-uk-equality-bill/

The Council of Europe Committee of Ministers Goes Out of Its Way to Exclude Intersex
http://oiiaustralia.com/council-europe-committee-ministers-exclude-intersex/

beyondblue’s Exclusion of LGBTI is a Disgrace
http://oiiaustralia.com/beyondblues-exclusion-lgbti-disgrace/

OII’s Objections to the APA DSM-V Committee’s Proposals on Intersex
http://oiiaustralia.com/wp-admin/post.php?action=edit&post;=7446

Email by Chris Somers xxy of OII to Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2006, asking for intersex inclusion in the Census
http://oiiaustralia.com/email-chris-somers-xxy-oii-australian-bureau-statistics-2006-intersex-inclusion-census/
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Angela (user currently living in AUSTRALIA) posted for intersex readers on 03/03/2010 tagged with armed forces
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A high-ranking medical member of the Australian armed forces told me the other day that intersex people are excluded from service if it is believed that our medical status gets in the way of being able to serve. How that is determined seems to be fuzzy though. Many intersex people, just like many non-intersex people, need to take HRT for example. Is taking HRT grounds for exclusion from service?
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Angela (user currently living in AUSTRALIA) posted for intersex readers on 03/03/2010 +5
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I would love to have'intersex' be one of the choices in 'What does your lived experience relate to?' as well as some more that directly relate to intersex.
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Stephen (user currently living in BELGIUM) posted for gay lesbian transgender bisexual intersex straight readers in response to this story on 23/02/2010
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We've amended the site and the Australian page now tells about the unequal age of consent in Queensland. Thanks for this comment.
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