Stories about: activism

The first time I met someone – other than a relative – that I knew was also intersex, it was over twenty years ago. We met quietly at a crusty pub near Roma Street station in Brisbane. We spent the afternoon sharing our experiences; revealing to one another our chromosomal patterns, family histories and hormone replacement regimes. …

Outside my window the sky is heavy and grey, much like the collective mood in Melbourne with each lockdown update. When Tilly Lawless answers the phone, her voice is bright and clear. Her laughter drowns out the rain and I feel the Sydney sunshine pulsing through the phone. This is one her gifts: to bring …

Archer Asks: Tarzan JungleQueen

Tarzan JungleQueen is a queer, non-binary, multidisciplinary artist based in Gulumoerrgin (Darwin), Northern Territory whose art practice straddles photography, graphic design, drawing, video, textual works, print making and everything in between. Their subject is themselves: distorted, caricatured, split and recompiled into an army of new configurations rallying warlike against the perils of a heterosexist and …

Content Warning: This article discusses domestic and family violence, and police violence.   On 28 May this year, Australia’s inaugural LGBTQ Domestic Violence Awareness Day was launched to highlight domestic, family and intimate partner violence in LGBTIQ communities. On the surface, this campaign seems to be championing a cause none of us would dispute. Its …

I love how sex workers call themselves simply ‘workers’.  “Are you a worker? I’m a worker.” Even clients say it: “My ex-girlfriend was a worker.” It’s both a code name for the most stigmatised work in the world, and a rebuttal against the assertion that our work isn’t “real” work. To say “I am a …

As a bit of an oddball child, I didn’t have a lot of friends. I was teased for a sexuality I didn’t yet realise, and for a gender identity I couldn’t yet fathom. It wasn’t until my teens, when I found my fellow queers and self-proclaimed weirdos, that I experienced a sense of community. Again …

Content warning: This article contains details of gendered violence and discussions of suicide.   When I first bled, I was sitting on my bed wearing yellow floral underwear. The pattern matched my soul. I was 12, and mature enough to know what it was. At school, students like me were taken to the dark and dusty …

Content warning: This article contains details of police violence and sexual assault.   In early 2018, I’d just experienced my bisexual awakening. It came as a result of immersing myself in several aspects of queer culture, though I didn’t realise I was doing so at the time. For years prior to my awakening, I watched …

Taz Clay, a 22-year-old Kalkadoon and Bwgcolman brotherboy, has made waves by using his lived experience of homelessness and queerness to advocate for better living conditions of those navigating LGBT+ healthcare, out-of-home care and alcohol and other drugs support over the last five years. An unrelenting activist for sistergirl and brotherboy suicide prevention and child …

Nevo Zisin is a Jewish, Queer, non-binary activist, public speaker and writer. They run gender inclusivity workshops in schools, workplaces, and in their local Jewish community. Nevo previously authored Finding Nevo, a poignant memoir on the experience of gender transitioning.   In the opening pages of The Pronoun Lowdown, you say: “I realised that I was …

Coronavirus and sex work

As the coronavirus erupts, people are panicking. Me, I’ve worked for seven years with the threat and awareness of illness and violence. My body has always been on the frontline with my work; viruses and infections are a risk with every client. Vigilantly checking he doesn’t finger me with the same hand he just used …

Well as per usual, the Mardi Gras put us through a range of fuckery this year. Firstly, the ANZ advertisement and the cringeworthy as hell hashtag “lovespeech”. Puke. So, the ANZ ad saw a range of young LGBTQIA+ people naming the slurs that have been used against them. Ending with some rubbish about how words …

Archer Asks: Uncle Jack Charles

When Uncle Jack Charles appeared on a 2015 ­episode of Q&A, he took the opportunity to point out to Australian viewers the ways in which the country is uniquely and peculiarly racist towards its First Nations peoples. It’s something he has experienced and seen, a lot, firsthand. His words resonated strongly. The beloved actor, trailblazer, Indigenous-theatre pioneer, …

Out of the Archives: Inside Out and prison abolition

Content Warning: Incarceration ALGA has a range of content relating to struggles for prison reform and prison abolition. This edition of Out Of The Archives will uncover some of this history.   In the last instalment of Out of the Archives, we brought you the story of Sandra Willson, a lesbian subjected to wrongful imprisonment …

Out of the Archives: The story of Sandra Willson

 Content warning: Incarceration, LGBTQIA phobia, Indigenous incarceration, violence, suicidal ideation, aversion therapy ALGA has a range of content relating to struggles for prison reform and prison abolition. This edition of Out Of The Archives will uncover some of this history.   Historically, queers have been targeted by state violence, and still are today. It is …

Something shifted two years ago, when the first #MeToo found itself pinned to an alluding tweet. Unwittingly, we had stumbled into a new uprising: one laced with belated anger and hot breath. One that was necessary and tingling. One itching to be found in the pages of future history books. Art, business, hospitality, sport: every …

Writer, speaker, executive editor of Out Magazine and former organiser for the Transgender Law Center, there’s no denying that Raquel Willis is an impressive force for good. Based in the U.S, Raquel is a Black queer transgender trailblazer backed by a formidable CV, with her work in community organising to lift up the voices of …

I ran into a teacher from my school recently. It’s been eight years, he barely recognised me. But when he did, the first question out of his mouth was “Do you have a husband?” In the space of about three minutes, he rephrased and asked the same question twice more, finally settling for “What about …

Hydraulic Fucking is a queer political theatre performance that shares the wisdom, research, and humour of Yuwaalaraay woman Cheryn Frost. Created as a part of her residency at Sydney’s PACT Theatre, the one-woman show draws parallels between fracking and sexual consent, and serves as a call to arms to prevent further environmental devastation from taking place …

My dear trans siblings, my gender diverse family,   Are you hurting right now, or sad, or lost, or confused, or tired? I know I am. Every day in our political and media spheres we see more and more attacks on us, and those like us, just for daring to live and exist as ourselves. …

For this next instalment of Out of the Archives we introduce you to Brian McGahen (1952-1990). He leaves behind a complicated life which begs the question, how do we write queer legacies? Out of the archives is a series from Jess Ison looking at queer her-/their-/his-tory in Australia in collaboration with Nick Henderson from the Australian Lesbian and …

“It’s done! We did it,” a colleague of mine tells me in the tearoom.  I know what he’s referring to. Two days prior to this exclamation, it was announced that 61.6 per cent of Austra­lians voted ‘yes’ to legalise same-sex marriage (SSM). Eyes beaming and shoulders relaxed, he says we can finally move on and be …

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Sexuality - Gender - Identity