Noosa will lose pink tourism dollar unless it 'comes out'

IT’S PERSONAL: Robin Bristow is leading a campaign to get Sunshine Coast councils, including Noosa, to support same-sex marriage.
IT’S PERSONAL: Robin Bristow is leading a campaign to get Sunshine Coast councils, including Noosa, to support same-sex marriage. Geoff Potter

THE fight to get Noosa Council to "come out" and support same-sex marriage has gone online.

The Sunshine Coast Rainbow Network, a group supporting the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex community, has launched an online petition on Change.Org.

The petition is addressed to all Noosa councillors and the CEO, Brett de Chastel, and calls on them to publicly support marriage equality.


Noosa architect Robin Bristow said Noosa should join the 40 other councils around Australia which have done this.

Mr de Chastel wrote to Mr Bristow in March explaining this was a Federal Government issue.

"At the moment, our focus as a council is on local government issues that we have jurisdiction over - we leave the Commonwealth to focus on their issues and the state to focus on their issues," he said.

But Mr Bristow is determined to have his local government change its mind.

He had a meeting with five councillors last week and he said they supported marriage equality.

"They said it was the 'Captain's Call' and Mayor Noel Playford won't support this at the moment," he said.

He couldn't understand why Noosa would be willing to lose out to its "arch-rival holiday market", Byron Bay.

"What Byron Bay has done in regards to marriage equality is amazing. They have had a love park made and have given free trees."

Noosa was once a mecca for the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras after party. Dubbed "Recovery Week", the event once brought thousands to the region. That has all but fizzled out.

Mr Bristow said Noosa had to be held accountable.

"As many as 40 councils around Australia have decided this is a core principal and are acting on it. It doesn't matter 300 odd councils have not. The point is not about the councils not doing it, but to look at those that are."

Mr Bristow, a former South African, said the issue was not about politics, it was personal.

"I've lived here for six years, this has become personal," he said.

"I'm living here, I'm' going to continue living here, I want to be happy here.

"The council is not embracing and caring for all the community.

"They haven't done enough.

"The pink dollar has left Noosa."

Topics:  editors picks marriage equality noosa tourism

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