Member votes against unions
THE Queensland Parliament last week passed the Relationships (Civil Partnerships) and Other Acts Amendment Bill 2015, allowing same-sex couples to be formally recognised in civil unions.
The bill was passed 69–22, with Member for Whitsunday Jason Costigan voting against the motion.
“This issue was a non-event for the vast majority of my constituents,” he said.
“Very few people in the community here were advocating for me to support the bill and the vast majority of LNP members were dead set against it.”
Mr Costigan said he felt there were “more pressing issues” in the community.
“Jobs, growing the economy, building dams, supporting agriculture, boosting tourism – these are just some of the issues at the forefront of the community’s thoughts and aspirations,” he said.
“From my observations, very few people were banging the drum for me to support the bill.”
The local member said he wasn’t going “to be frightened to speak up for the vast majority of the people in our community”.
“And in the eyes of many observers, this (bill) just mimics the concept of marriage – and marriage is between a man and a woman as far as I’m concerned,” he said.
Instead, Mr Costigan said he and supporters of the bill should agree to disagree.
“I respect a number of people out there have a different view to me and the majority of people I represent, and I respect those views,” he said.
“But at the same time, it’s important that those people respect the other side of the equation and those who are very supportive of the concept that marriage is between a man and a woman.
“I stand by my decision and I believe the vast majority of my constituents over the diverse electorate of Whitsunday understand why I voted the way I did.”
REPRESENTATIVE: Member for Whitsunday Jason Costigan.