Dubbo woman backs big business call for marriage equality

EXECUTIVE DECISION: High-profile Australian business executives have sent a letter to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull calling for civil marriage equality. Photo: File
EXECUTIVE DECISION: High-profile Australian business executives have sent a letter to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull calling for civil marriage equality. Photo: File

A small business owner in Dubbo is grateful that big business in Australia has taken a stand on marriage equality.

Karen Payne of Local Coffee Co in Brisbane Street has applauded more than 30 Australian business executives for penning a joint letter to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

“The majority of Australians and MPs support this reform,” it states. “We ask the Australian Parliament to deliver civil marriage equality for every Australian so that our nation can move forward as a more inclusive place to live, work and play.” 

Among the signatories are managing director and chairman of Holden Mark Bernhard, chief executive officer of the National Rugby League Todd Greenberg and Commonwealth Bank chief executive officer Ian Narev.

Ms Payne, an advocate for marriage equality, said the letter  was “wonderful” and encouraged other Australians to show their support.

But the entry of big business into the debate has not pleased federal Immigration Minister Peter Dutton.

On Friday Mr Dutton said Australian business leaders and companies were being bullied by activist groups.

"We need to have the ability for both sides to be heard and we're in a politically correct age it seems, which I can't tolerate, and I think a lot of Australians are of the same view," he said.

Mr Dutton said publicly-listed companies shouldn't take political stances and business leaders should not prioritise debating moral issues over running their companies.

The letter was released by the Equality Campaign, a joint initiative of Australians for Equality and Australian Marriage Equality aimed at encouraging a parliamentary vote on marriage equality.

The letter noted that more than 20 countries had passed laws to allow same-sex marriage including the United States of America, New Zealand, Canada and Great Britain.

“Marriage equality is simply based on our shared Australian values of a fair go and respect for all..,” the letter states.