Rainbow Families NSW has released a guide for schools and daycare centres to support lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) parents and their children throughout the postal plebiscite.
Rainbow Families Co-Chair, Vanessa Gonzalez said the Guide to supporting our kids through the postal plebiscite was created in response to an identified need from the community.
“This debate is not actually about our families, they already exist, and our kids deserve to be safe and protected at school.
“But there have already been reports of children and LGBTIQ families being targeted in hurtful campaign material.
“We wanted to equip school communities to support our kids during this time.”
Rainbow Families Co-Chair, Ashley Scott, said that the guide was designed to provide clear ways that communities can support the kids of rainbow families during the postal plebiscite.
“The guide has ten simple ways school communities can support children and parents.
“Our website also contains resources to support parents during this time.
The guide was released to schools where a parent or carer from that school community asked Rainbow Families to send it them.
“We have sent the guide to schools across Australia this morning and are encouraging school leaders to share it with their staff.”
The guide was sent to over 400 schools and day care centres. So far only 40% of the emails have been opened, so if you requested the guide to be sent, please don’t assume it has been read.
We encourage everyone to print the guide and take it to your child’s school, day care centre or P&C association, and have a conversation with the school community about how they can support your family.
Rodney Chiang-Cruise, a parent from our community, told Rainbow Families that his school community had been extremely receptive of the Guide.
“It is something that I have been wanting ever since this survey was announced,” Rodney said.
“I wanted something that I could take to my son's school and speak about.
“The guide is great. This morning I sent it to the Headmaster of my son's school and within 30 minutes he was back in contact with me. He understood my concerns about the hate campaign being waged against our families. He did more than just understand, with the guide in hand he committed to ensuring all teachers get a copy, committed to speaking to all the teachers about looking out for our kids. He went further and said he would make it part of his assembly address and put it in the weekly newsletter.
“As a gay dad, I felt a huge sigh of relief. We may not be able to stop the hate campaign, but with the school we can ensure our son's school is a safe place for him. I am grateful to the Headmaster for being so receptive. I am happy that I had the guide to start that conversation.”