The Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey has got Dubbo residents as excited as brides walking down the aisle.
They have bombarded the Daily Liberal’s Facebook page with positive responses to the voluntary survey. An overwhelming majority say they will answer “yes” to the survey’s only question. The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) reports that the question is “Should the law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry?”
Marriage equality advocates are challenging the $122 million survey in the High Court. If the challenge fails, the ABS will begin mailing survey forms to eligible Australians on the Commonwealth Electoral Roll from September 12. Wannabe survey participants have until August 24 to to enrol, check or update their details at www.aec.gov.au or get an enrolment form at any Australian Electoral Commission office or post office.
Posts on the Daily Liberal Facebook page suggest Dubbo is not divorced from the grassroots bid to achieve marriage equality in Australia. “All consenting adults should be able to marry other consenting adults,” Laura Portelli wrote.
Lisa Rowney asked “..why shouldn't everyone have the opportunity. Love is love.” Sharon Gay said she would be voting “yes” because she loved her son and his partner.
Not everyone was keen to see the Marriage Act changed. Jeneane Gosch confirmed she would take part in the survey and “no will be my answer”.
The ABS reports that the package containing the survey form will include a reply paid envelope and instructions. People who do not want to take part should destroy the survey form by “tearing it into two or more parts”. Completed surveys will be received up until November 7. The result of the survey will not be released until November 15.
Treasurer Scott Morrison directed the ABS to conduct the survey under the Census and Statistics Act 1905 after the federal government failed twice to get the Senate to agree to a same-sex marriage plebiscite, an election promise.
Federal Member for Parkes Mark Coulton has revealed that the survey result will determine how he votes on the issue in Parliament. He said it would be disappointing if his political colleagues did not abide by the non-biding survey result.