In 2003, the Victorian Law Reform Commission published a consultation paper and received 255 submissions. Many people wrote submissions in favour of law reform including the Fertility Access Rights Lobby, Prospective Lesbian Parents and the Victorian Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby. By early 2005 the Love Makes A Family campaign team had been meeting regularly and was ready to coordinate the community response to the three position Papers released by the Commission. Once each Position Paper was released we had just one month to educate the community and garner support for our suggested response and the recommendations.
The important factor was that for every form letter or generated email organised by church communities or anti-gay groups the opinion expressed counted only once, no matter how may times it was repeated. Telling our personal stories, talking about our real hopes and dreams about creating families and being parents or grandparents, counted as a unique individual opinion each and every time.
The LMAF Newsletter from April 2005 states:
A big thank you to the 104 supporters who responded to the Fertility Access Rights Lobby’s (FAR’s) call to respond to Position Paper 1 on access, and who used our quick response email and phone script to do so. FYI, this outnumbers the 69 ‘form letters’ opposing reform sent by religious groups. Well done also to the 42 individuals and organisations who wrote very supportive submissions.
In October 2005 the LMAF Newsletter noted that “After just over one month, the Commission received 245 submissions” in response to Position Paper 2 on Parentage. A further 55 submissions were received by the Commission in response to the third position paper on Surrogacy.
Overall the public response to the Three Position Papers was overwhelmingly in our favour with over 750 submissions received by the Commission.
Read the Victorian Law Reform Commission’s consultation paper, positions paper and final reports here.