Pride Day celebrations honour LGBTIQ community at Swinburne
Monday 10 October 2016
- Swinburne hosts third annual Pride Day
- Guest speakers included Michael Kirby and Rowena Allen
- Event celebrated the LGBTIQ community at Swinburne
Swinburne has hosted its third annual Pride Day, at the university’s Hawthorn campus.
The day of festivities, which included food, live entertainment, and guest speakers, was an opportunity for Swinburne to celebrate its LGBTIQ students, staff and friends of the university.
With the event MC'd by Joshua Briers, Queer Officer for the Swinburne Studen Union, guest speakers included:
- The honourable Michael Kirby AC CMG
- Rowena Allen, Victoria’s first Gender and Sexuality Commissioner
- Professor Linda Kristjanson, Vice-Chancellor and President, Swinburne
L-R: Professor Linda Kristjanson, Honourable Michael Kirby, Rowena Allen
Working together to create positive change
In his address, Justice Kirby congratulated Swinburne for its commitment to creating a supportive and inclusive environment, where LGBTIQ people are supported and empowered.
“Universities must be leaders in social change. It is wonderful that Swinburne was the first university in Australia to declare its support for marriage equality, back in 2015."
Justice Kirby also acknowledged the allies, saying that progress cannot be made unless the LGBTIQ community has the support of straight peers.
“We mustn’t live in our silos. We must walk together- with people of other sexualities, genders, gender identities and race.”
Justice Kirby said he hoped by speaking at Swinburne, he could educate those around him about the issues and barriers LGBTIQ people face.
Creating an inclusive community for all
Swinburne prides itself on being a university that is supportive of all its staff and students.
“Respect for diversity is one of our university’s core values and it guides everything we do,” Swinburne Vice-Chancellor and President, Professor Linda Kristjan says.
“Our Pride at Swinburne Strategic Action Plan is another way we promote greater visibility and awareness of the issues experienced by our LGBTIQ staff and students."
Swinburne has also been a leader in other areas of diversity and inclusion, including:
- Being named an Employer of Choice for Gender Equality, seven years in a row, by The Workplace Gender Equality Agency
- Launching a Reconciliation Action Plan, with a commitment to educational and career pathways for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples
- Being the first university in Australia to launch a Financial Inclusion Action Plan, which will support students experiencing financial hardship