Reforms in recent years have brought significant developments in the legal recognition of LGBTIQ+ families. This has included recognising same-sex de facto relationships, and more recently, same-sex marriage as well as expanding the definition of ‘parent’ to enable two lesbian women to be legal parents. However, there are still areas in which more needs to be done to reflect the experiences of LGBTIQ+ families and the diversity and complexity of family structures.
The key role played by the Census in providing government, private sector and the general population with information about the composition of the Australian population means that is vital that the LGBTIQ+ population is accurately represented in Census data. This requires that the Census survey is formulated in a way that is inclusive of the LGBTIQ+ community.
Rainbow Families' submission focuses on the following issues identified in the community arising from the 2016 Census process:
· Limitations of Census questions in reflecting LGBTIQ+ families and relationships
· Relationships and families not captured by the Census
· Additional opt in procedure for providing information about gender diversity
· Limitations on availability of accurate data for purposes of planning and service provision