Councillor Asks Nillumbik to Support Equality & IDAHOBIT

Sugarloaf Ward Councillor Jane Ashton faces an uphill battle at Council tomorrow night

Nillumbik Councillor Jane Ashton will introduce a motion at Nillumbik Shire Council tomorrow night, asking for support for marriage equality and the International Day Against Homo/Bi/Intersex/Trans-phobia. Full text of the motion below.

UPDATE: The motion was passed!

Jane is facing an uphill battle from a largely indifferent council and could use your support. She writes

“This is not going to go smoothly, so wish me well, or come and support me.”


You can email her your support and thanks: Jane Ashton <>


If you have a question of your own you’d like to ask the council, complete the Ask a question form and submit by 5pm on the day prior to the meeting. Your name will be read out at the meeting and recorded in the minutes.


If you can make it to the meeting it will be held in the Council Chamber at the Civic Centre, Civic Drive, Greensborough, at 7pm tomorrow, 19th December.

If you are not present in person, your question will not be read, but will be referred to the appropriate officer for a formal written response.

Jane tried to get the council to make a formal declaration in support of marriage equality during the campaign, but was unsuccessful.


Following the successful outcome of the Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey and the subsequent legalisation of same sex marriage in Australia in November this year, it is important that Council recognises the significant impact these social reforms in achieving greater equality in our community.

The adopted Council Plan 2017-2021 has specifically included priority action 1.5.7 ‘Ensure that the LGBTI community is included and engaged in initiatives that are supported by Council’ to support greater inclusion and recognition of Nillumbik’s LGBTI community. Work has commenced this financial year in planning an approach to engaging with the LGBTI community, with a focus on developing an inclusion plan in the following (2018/19) financial year.

To support greater engagement and inclusion of Nillumbik’s LGBTI community, Council can play a role in supporting International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT) and other activities that encourage greater inclusion and wellbeing.

I hereby give notice of my intention to move the following motion at the Ordinary Meeting of Council to be held on 19 December 2017:


That Council:

  1. Acknowledges the outcome of the Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey with 61.6% of responses in support of legalising same sex marriage and subsequent legalisation of same sex marriage by the Commonwealth Government;
  2. Publicly supports marriage equality, recognising that inclusivity for all residents supports improved health and wellbeing outcomes;
  3. Actively supports International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT) by incorporating this day (17 May) into its calendar of events from 2018 onwards and funding a small community grant program ($500 per grant, maximum program of $5,000 per annum) to support local community groups and events that promote and encourage IDAHOBIT and LGBTI inclusion.

Cr Jane Ashton

1 December 2017


About the author

Veteran gay writer and speaker, Doug was one of the founders of the UKs pioneering GLBTI newspaper Gay News (1972) , and of the second, Gay Week, and is a former Features Editor of Him International. He presented news and current affairs on JOY 94.9 FM Melbourne for more than ten years. "Doug is revered, feared and reviled in equal quantities, at times dividing people with his journalistic wrath. Yet there is no doubt this grandpa-esque bear keeps everyone abreast of anything and everything LGBT across the globe." (Daniel Witthaus, "Beyond Priscilla", Clouds of Magellan, Melbourne, 2014)