Jan Logie tours the Rainbow Room

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[00:00:00] This program is brought to you by pride nz.com. [00:00:05] So I'm Jay Maggie, I'm a Green Party, MP and one of the CO chairs of the cross party, Rainbow network here in our parliament. And we are standing right now in the Rainbow Room, which is one of the select committee rooms and Parliament that is themed to represent a community that has potentially be marginalized and not fully recognized by our parliament. [00:00:37] What is the history of the Rainbow Room? [00:00:39] So it was created in 2008 by the speaker Margaret Wilson, and recognition that actually LGBT q A plus people in New Zealand have contributed a lot to the country, and that there was value in them having a visible space. And now parliament. [00:01:02] Why do you think it's important? [00:01:04] Well, for me, I think two reasons one, and acknowledgement that the laws that have been created in this place, caused profound harm to huge numbers of people from our community. And I hope as having a visible presence here will help prevent that happening again. And I also think it's really important that when there is that kind of history, and when I community is marginalized stand experiences discrimination and the population that Parliament does what it can, even in the small things like as spices to counter that discrimination, and show that [00:02:00] this Parliament represents everyone. [00:02:04] When you say that there were laws that that weren't so good for LGBT communities, what were those rules? [00:02:11] Well, you know, the parliament created the laws that criminalized homosexuality as an example. And pre colonization, there was, you know, there's evidence that we have of communities embracing sexual and gender diversity, and the colonial powers and laws created by this place, overturned that and criminalized us [00:02:43] in terms of creating a space within Parliament itself, how easy or how hard was it to create a rubber room? [00:02:52] Well, actually, I wasn't around the time, and that Margaret, most Wilson made that decision, I guess, about having a speaker in the house who gets the importance of democracy and being inclusive. And who's willing to take that leadership? And she does. And I think, you know, the results speaks for itself. Yeah. [00:03:16] So it's just actually been relaunched a couple of months ago. Can you describe what it looked like prior to the relaunch? And what it looks like now? [00:03:24] Yeah, um, [00:03:27] you know, like credit to the speaker for creating the room, but I've got to say it was a bit depressing. It was a head kind of Billy green in Shell kind of paint and some, you know, admirable artworks from people with, like, toss Wollaston you know that so but in those colors that were very you know, you kind of envied rock [00:04:01] kind of mood to them didn't evoke or [00:04:07] the vibrancy of our communities I, to me anyway, Draper depressing to be honest. [00:04:15] And so today, how does that look? [00:04:17] Well, today is an absolute contrast where we've got really fresh white paint that just kind of sings of, kind of, by you know, a lightness and freshness and we have a selection of our beautiful flags here in the room and outwork by Elizabeth Kelly Kelly, which is Manoj Taka, Taka with the rainbow colors on took it to go panels. And then there's the photos of out in pais on the walls and pieces of the significant legislation. So it's really [00:05:03] it's got the color that reflects our community, I think, [00:05:08] can we actually just go around and look at the photographs to begin with, and maybe if you could just name the people. And also give me a what was the what was the criteria for actually being on the wall here. [00:05:17] So the criteria was for somebody to have been in Parliament and to have been out and to want their picture on the wall. And so we have Maryland wearing who was the first out in PL said against who will actually in the community, but had the public get behind her after that, which is a pretty, I think, inspiring part of our history as a country makes me feel good about us. And then Chris Carter, who was elected in 93, and then turn by MIT, and Georgina Baya, obviously, you know, thought lovers, and she says, you know, the first out trends, Gina, Member of Parliament anywhere in the world, which is, I've got to say, for me being on those moments where I felt really great about our country. And then Marion street from 2005 and 2006. And then Kevin Hague, and Grant Robertson, and Lewis a wall all came in in 2008. [00:06:28] And Was there anyone that didn't want to be on the wall that you approached him that they didn't want to be there? [00:06:34] And my understanding is that Yes, they are. And obviously, I'm not going to name them, but choosing not to be not wanting to be part of that history. Yeah. And being on this side, we've got me and then Paul foster Bell, I been closed as how easy and Thomas E coffee and Kelly taboo, Ellen and Chloe shore, but her adorable puppy. [00:07:04] Now, there are some absences here. And I think of the Allies over the years people like frame while and trigger Mallard while they up? [00:07:15] Well, I guess that's something that we could consider for. For another part of the room, I think the that is an important to me, at least to acknowledge that out in pays, because when particularly you're kind of a young, queer, or appearance of a young one coming out, and not knowing if the world's gonna be okay for them, to actually see that there are members of parliament who are standing proudly, and may sexuality or gender identity, I think gives hope. And so I think Ben itself is really important. But I do think you're right allies have played a really significant roles for us in this place. And that would be good to acknowledge them. [00:08:07] On the side backhaul, I guess you've got six pieces of legislation, can you take me through what those bits of legislation are and why they're significant. [00:08:16] And so the first one is homosexual law reform, which was the decriminalization of homosexuality and being and which was, I guess, the first piece of positive law reform, as I understand that, in this country, that around restoring our access to rights to exist as we are, and mixed, in that vein came the Human Rights x, which was a protection from discrimination, and on the grounds of sexual orientation, and also include six and it's been great that the current Minister for justice has acknowledged the benefit of clarifying that this legislation and the Human Rights Act does protect transgender people and non binary people from discrimination as well, that being a crown law, opinion that the existing legislation does, but the way it's framed is less than ideal. And, and people don't feel that it does. And that's really important that it's clear. And in the civil union x in 2004, which was, I guess, the precursor to marriage equality, and set up the option for people to have civil partnerships. And that and I still remember the conversations in the community at the time, and some of them being positive QMX lesbians, really, hey, sadly, NT the idea of kind of, you know, patriarchal relationship models, and yeah, so it's, but that was the start of a movement to get yet towards marriage equality. And then there's the relationship statutory references x of 2005, which I think was enabling people, it was ensuring that property relationship forms, enabled, it wasn't necessarily male, husband, wife, that it enabled, same sex relationships be covered by those forms. And then marriage equality, and then the expansion of convictions for historical homosexual offenses, the most recent and 2018 and to have homosexual Law Reform at one end, and the that the other is a kind of a nice bookmarking. [00:11:03] quite remarkable, all of these bits of legislation have happened in the last, what 3030 or so years? [00:11:09] Absolutely. It's, you know, there's sometimes I reflect on the amount of while I get really frustrated with the, you know, the things that we haven't done yet, but it just seemed to me, just so frustrating. And I'm just like, why can't we get on and just do it? This is not that hard. But to see actually how far we've come in 30 years, it's, you know, it's inspiring me to think that maybe we can just keep moving and get it done. [00:11:44] Now, when we twirl around, and we're looking at the front of the room now, and we've got numerous flags, why was a significant wasn't important to have, not just the rainbow flag, but all these other flags here. [00:11:57] I guess we've had the represented to us, particularly from some younger members of the community, but not exclusively, that. For them, the rainbow flag doesn't resonate, and when they see it, they that it represents more gay and lesbian. And particularly for young trans and intersex people actually have em bisexuals as well, I've heard my strongly from that day, they identified most strongly with their flex and [00:12:35] the side [00:12:37] of our community, or being a kind of a coherent kind of single thing isn't quite right, right. Like actually, which is the idea behind the rainbow flag is the differences but that we stronger when the rainbow flag is the end other people can see the specific identity flags as well. [00:13:01] Can you just take me through which flags we've got [00:13:03] show us we've got the a sexual flag they made into six flag and then the pen sexual flag, the trends flag, the LGBT Pride plant, flag, New Zealand flag, the flag, and the black, Asian and minority ethnic rainbow flag and the bisexual flag. [00:13:24] And hanging right in the middle of the room is just an amazing artwork by Elizabeth kitty kitty, can you tell me about it? [00:13:31] Yeah, it is. It's so vibrant, and so beautiful. So it is you've got two wooden panels on the side and been, they look like with its kind of rods that form the basis of a panel. And almost it's kind of kind of an arrow image to it. And then going across making the took who took the panels is a rainbow flag image. And it's just vibrant and beautiful. And it was commissioned by Parliament. After the passing of the marriage equality legislation, yeah. [00:14:15] Can you tell me what it was like, being here on the relaunch of the room a couple of months ago, and you had all these [00:14:23] random elders here and former MPs, it was really beautiful. It was [00:14:30] it was like, the idea for me is that Parliament should be a group of people who represent our communities who are all of our communities, not, you know, these people stuck in a separate world. And and for people who've just spent so much of their lives, whether that be by them, DK so some of that out as, but also just in the proportion of their lives for some of our young ones, really just giving of themselves for our community and pushing for justice and equality. And to have them in here. And [00:15:22] kind of [00:15:23] kiss I hope that it felt to them as if they really felt that this space was a reflection of the contribution. Like that's what I hope because, because that's what I want it to be and what it represents for me and, and it was really beautiful and really special. [00:15:46] One of the things we haven't mentioned was that there was a special documentary made for the room, which was about 30 minutes. Tell me about that. [00:15:55] And yes, so there's a fabulous little document remaking team here at Parliament now and it's kind of a new thing. There's a really talented guy jack. And so he made a documentary about kind of, I guess, some of the history around out in pays and parliament. And so the documentary is available on the parliamentary website now but also they can people can have it screened here if they come and have a visit to the room. And it's really moving. I thought it's really well made and some powerful stories about moments in our history and some of the passing of the legislation. [00:16:40] Yeah. Now you mentioned about visiting the room. How does one visit the Rainbow Room in Parliament and what can be done here? [00:16:48] Well, so this is a select committee room so which is we're select committees consider pieces of legislation and here submission when the public so this room will be used at different kinds of it. All sorts of different pieces of legislation we use this for the expansion of the convictions for most of it hearing but before it was done up, so probably nobody noticed it was a rainbow. But and also a community I've lost wall and I've hosted an event here I think is part of one of the local pride festivals where was kind of an afternoon tea with I think it was kind of rainbow youth or inside out kind of young ones which was really lovely and, and people if they want to come visit they can either give the give me a call or give one of their local MPs a call and ask to come be shown around or call the tour disc at Parliament and get them to arrange a viewing of the room.

This page features computer generated text of the source audio - it is not a transcript. The Artificial Intelligence Text is provided to help users when searching for keywords or phrases. The text has not been manually checked for accuracy against the original audio and will contain many errors.