Council rejects Australian Christian Lobby’s push to drop LGBT funding

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As the national marriage equality postal survey entered its final week, the leading organisation behind the “no” campaign, the Australian Christian Lobby’s NSW director wrote to councillors asking them to re-evaluate the use of public money for LGBTI groups.

Kieren Jackson asked them to instead prioritise “the most vulnerable in society, the sick and those with disabilities”, The Sydney Morning Herald reports.

He went on to say: “The question that needs to be asked is whether the Inner West Council’s energetic support of the ‘Yes’ campaign in the current postal survey is colouring the council’s judgment when it comes to being responsible with ratepayers’ money.”

However, his bid was unsuccessful as councillors voted overwhelmingly to approve more than $67,000 in funding for 13 LGBTI programs for the upcoming year.

Mayor Darcy Byrne told a council meeting on Tuesday: “We are giving out several hundreds of thousands of dollars in grants to a wide range of organisations, some of which are LGBT organisations. So what?

“Anyone who is arguing against [support] for a particular group or subset because it’s exclusive is also arguing for an end for any support from this council to any ethnic groups.”

Councillors also backed an amendment for a report outlining the “criteria and processes” involved in the approval of projects in the annual grant program.

The LGBTI projects accounted for 10 per cent of the grant program’s total amount…

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