Tighe Instone - homosexual law reform

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[00:00:00] This podcast is brought to you by pride in zero.com, with dinner support from the rule Foundation, TV 1986. [00:00:09] For me, it would be easier to start at the beginning in March 1985, when the homosexual law reform bill was introduced into parliament, because it had been a secret, up until that point friend didn't want the any opposition people, people that might possibly oppose that we thought he thought there'd be huge opposition, which of course, was eventually, but immediately, but she wanted to keep it a secret until it until she introduced it into part and that was it was the beginning of the first week in March 1985. [00:00:46] And how were you involved in that? [00:00:49] Will Linda ravens called a meeting of the lesbian coalition abandoned a month before the bill was introduced to gauge lesbian interest in and you know, and what working to support the bill and I read along to that meeting, primarily because I think you know, in those days in the in the, in the passing around, particularly around the Royal Oak that leads me on some gaming, social and things like Cameron's coffee shop the wars I don't know whether they're still going in the 80s but but you know, through the 70s anyway, we had the Dorian club that was and it was mixed in sometimes it wasn't sometimes it wasn't we socialized much more with the game in the in Pepsi's be instead later it at the time of the introduction time six or or four. And I had been part of that scene where we socialize a lot with with the gay guys up to in the I love to Tevin bear in the rural loco to it was something else that was fabulous. It was all noise and jukebox and smoke and it was suddenly and such a diverse group of people. You know, the undercover undercover cops, there were the prostitutes running in through in and out from the the Bistro and France. They were the drag queens, there was a game in the world is being sort of Salvation Army with the war cry. It was it was just something else. It was pandemonium. And and then in amongst all the all the Crimson dragons and people like that. And that I had, I was aware that two dear friends of mine who were gaming Head Head, you know, charges against them. One of them was convicted, I'm not quite sure where the other one wasn't, was convicted or not. But he lost his job anyway. And and that, and that was David stating for him he was in the Air Force. And, and he was it was a source of great pride to him that he was in the Air Force. And when and what the force used to do was they didn't sick people if something like this happens, and they got very, very good lawyers. And they usually got them off. But then they didn't renew these contracts. And I think probably that's what happened to him, but I'm not absolutely certain. And so I had bought it and observed how ripped those two friends lives were by the slaw. And I was determined that I was going to be involved and getting rid of that. [00:03:43] So Linda called the meeting of the lid lesbian coalition is Yeah, so tell us about that meeting. [00:03:51] Well, what she was what she was canvassing was interest and was there were there were huge diversity and lesbian reaction to it. Some some these beings didn't want to have anything to do with it. Some these beings felt that it would be what usually seemed to happen was the lesbians doing all the work and the game is benefit. And it was going to be a human rights clause, which would there were two clauses, the decriminalization of, of the law, and then coverage from the Human Rights Commission. But a lot of people weren't a lot of other lovelies beings, we didn't, we didn't reach the net didn't want to be included in the law, felt we were much better outside of the law, we were much better as outlaws. And so and some other other at least been thought we should be working on on other issues, not this one at all. And so a diverse reaction to it among, among lesbians anywhere else, I committed myself to being involved. And we needed to, to find some lesbians who were prepared to go along to the gay taskforce meetings to say that there was a, you know, communication between the two groups. And most people didn't want to do that. But I sort of figured because I was used to [00:05:21] hit more had been used to I wasn't an activist at the stage. I might, I might tell you [00:05:28] that I was used to socializing with the gay guys, that wouldn't bother me. And so I volunteered. And me and Pauline Simmons, and Allison Lori and Linda Evans. And later Jim, Julie Glenn was there and Allison Lesh i think i think she was involved in it. And we always made sure at least two of us went to those meetings. And so that was that was one of the decisions, I think that was made it they do, it was certainly made very usually on that we that we'd have the, you know, maintain the communication and, and in with alongside the support any issues that we wanted to do, but later actually, once once the bill was, was introduced, and, and it was it only just been introduced, and the and the reaction immediately started and have two employees. More bank, I think his name was and oh, no, there were four in peace. Norman Jones, the one from Napier, what was his name? I can't remember. But the foreign peace immediately got involved in the opposition to the, to the end the what his name was Keith, Keith, hey and Peter Tate. So Peter Tate of the Marineland Keith, Keith, hey homes, they say tap the coalition of control subsistence. Yeah. And and these foreign piece of which Norman joins the mouth from the south. And Alan Baldwin, although he faded he and the one from Napier. And I can't think who the other one was, there was another one, there were four of them. And so they all got grand in announced through the media that they were going to get a million signatures against this bill by the end of May. And the next thing that happened for us was that some of the young gay men who've been part of the National Gay Rights Coalition, formed a group and willing to, of course, I'm only talking about Wellington, I'm not talking about what was happening in other places, formed a group called campaign for homosexual equality. And that was given young and [00:07:57] dockless gene can a [00:08:01] whole lot of New Yorkers, and [00:08:07] they were fabulous I where I fit that. And I were very aware of sexism. And actually, that was one of the best groups to work with. I remember given young women in the following October when it was Linda's birthday, he baked a cake for Linda food this day and brought us along to the meeting. I mean, you know, they were just darling guys, they were fabulous. And the the the guy Task Force wasn't quite so easy to work in. And Bill Logan's No, no doubt spoken a lot about that. Because it was such a again, it was such a diverse group of people. And the a lot of the see a lot of the older get very conservative gaming, all they wanted was the decriminalization, they didn't want to know about the politics of it. They just and I didn't care what age it was. And they thought the lesbians came along to the meetings had far too much to say [00:09:06] is a lesbian going to the gay Task Force, you were reporting back to the lesbian coalition set? Right? So How often would the lesbian coalition meet them? What? What were they really interested in with this? [00:09:21] Well, originally, I think probably about once a month, we actually we were meeting das after about three weeks, we had meetings just about every night of the week, sometimes two or three. And because I mean, this is just the beginning. Then the next thing that Hank, the hitter, six holes and afraid of gays for later, but that's a bit down the track. But we decided that we were all in the name Hank, was coined in an Auckland by Barbara Goodman, who started at all with with, you know, very, very good reason. But the trouble was that they were putting out a lot of stuff that was we didn't really always quite agree with. And we thought it'd be good if we had an umbrella that that brought them in, you know, with so that everybody sort of a head head, head an understanding of of the political implications of all this. And so we set up what was called the coalition and support of the bill. Now, that was a gay Task Force initiative. And Bill Logan and I were for the inaugural meeting of that, we were that we were the two sort of lesbian and the gay men to, to get to get that off the ground. And so, so now we had the lesbian coalition. We had shieh camp campaign via file equality with the gay Task Force, we had to go to all these meetings, see what we're saying? We didn't go to the hag meetings, but sometimes we were invited to go along as a speaker, but then they weren't, I didn't want you to speak about the politics of the thing at the hack meetings. That's why it was it was good to sort of bring them into the into the coalition. But and the cut the coalition was paid is I was involved in the coalition right from the word go. And, and I'll tell you what, it was a huge learning curve for me because as I say, I wasn't an activist, but I had to get involved all the women's groups, the rape crisis of refuge women, all the unions, as Russia and and all the way all the churches, and I meet so many people end up the Maxus, the, the you know, we had the the communists and the Trotskyites and it was it wasn't in the socialist socialist section people. Oh, wow. It was it was incredible. And and we were a force to be reckoned with actually. And we had, there was a drag queen coldly, only who, who will love stockings, we thought it was TNT, stockings, and who was a public servant? And was a clip in the clip on this is pre computer days, I think we have to remember that too. So all the communication was either telephone or by mail. And Leoni was worked in public service doing filing and and did a CAD indexing system with all our contacts on it, it was the end it was the best contact list in the country. And Britt Rawnsley eventually put that contact list on to computer because he had one of the very early computers but but way back in 85 you know, we didn't have any computers no cell phones just just ordinary telephones and and the only did that and and we started a mailing list for that for the coalition and the photocopiers, you know, in the businesses. And so if anybody had access to a fight a copy of NR, one of the places that we did a lot of photocopying. What and Frankie was in ZD. Yes, they were marvelously support. The students were wonderful. Trish melons was she was in the coalition's which he was one of the ones that helped get the Opera House really. But anyway, and Linda worked at the, at the broadcasting library. And I and I had an awful old typewriter that used to belong to the women's Cricket Association. That wasn't it wasn't very good. And so I used to go in and use her good typewriters and her office. And and and then I'd often photocopy copies on her photocopier. And I remember one time they these people that were looking around, you know, they they were going to conduct a tour of the public service. [00:13:59] And some the new mean, take he didn't know you work to Linda said she doesn't [00:14:09] do think a lot of public service resource Winton to supporting the campaign. Yes, but dang Taylor song. [00:14:20] Because I was always doing these press releases, you see. So I read and I make these little headings, the way I made it is because I, we, you know, we didn't have computers to, you know, to be able to use all those different fans. So I'd write it about three or four times whatever the subject was at the top and in the date and what it was, it was two and it was and then right these media releases, and then it was so easy because the TV was right there the broadcast the radio broadcasting was right the rush up to the Evening Post and the Dominion officers and and and drop them NUC. So Linda was very in a very strategic position [00:15:02] and drop them into any other radio station like radio windy or something like that, that we wanted to to. [00:15:08] Sounds really fun. Actually, a lot of it [00:15:12] was fun, Jake, it really, really right. And we had our post office box at the box was at the main street post office, I had to go in the regulated. And I'll tell you something else that was really, really nice when we sorry about planning it. When we when we set up the coalition and support of the bill. And we hit the first of all, we hit this right rarely, but this will hit the rally at the trade tool that was the inaugural Lord. Then we hit from that we organized the Opera House meeting. And then we suddenly discovered we were overspent we thought we'd run out of money. So we did this big appeal. What was this name? I can't think of his name. He wrote it. For us. It's signed by me but I didn't write it. He wrote such a good captain. That doesn't mean and and we see this appear everywhere in the first place. And we and we got all this money. In the end. We never spent all the money. We had so much money, we never spent it. We gave it to the AIDS Foundation. What was what you know what we didn't spend, but we never had to worry about money again. And that coalition. And we had we organized rallies a panel on the parliament grounds and all sorts of things and went to the the signing of the either the presentation of the of the petition. But but as a site, we never had to worry again. And the first donation that I opened was from David Swartz, who's that the spokesperson for the job for the Jewish community here. And we of course, we're always quoting past the name Allah's thing. You know, they came for the, the swan, they came for that one. And perhaps I'm jumping up here, but because I should say before that it would have been an end may think that they started that the the people, the opposing, concerned citizens started calling meetings all over the country to oppose that they had one on the hope Town Hall and Wellington, I tell you what you would have laughed at, it was as we went along with a policy of that we would either laugh, or sing. And we you know, we wouldn't, we wouldn't let them upset us in any way. And it was a town hall and well, in the Old Town Hall was absolutely packed. There were there were so many policeman, you have no idea. And RN di Cleary and somebody else from my neck dressed up as nuns. And because we were told if you if you've got out of your seat, you you're going to be arrested. And this other woman noticed that the staff were walking down the aisle. The police didn't know what to do. [00:17:50] cheering and why. [00:17:52] And we hit song sheets as well. So and and I had a sign that that I kept on holding holding up to say [00:18:04] cheer coming, coming models on it might ICICI I can carry me money. So so that every time I held up my sign even right? [00:18:15] And no somebody would get up and say number two, so number two on the song sheet and away we go. And at that meeting, Norman Jones, but that's that's the meeting when he told us all to get back to our sewers when we came from it was late meeting. And this LKZ was a lawyer and he he had a particularly means backgammon board, he said, but there was a doctor, Dr. Delaney, he actually gave up halfway through his speech, because there was so much noise because he was saying, we were all the product of mothers. So today [00:18:55] where did he go to school? [00:19:00] It was it was incredible. And when he, when he didn't get the opportunity to finish his speech, he went to the Evening Post and he had published and fallen the Evening Post. And in Tony, Tony, Tony, somebody I can't remember his name was he was a psychologist, that fact, he wrote an article that opposed what Dr. Delaney said. And of course, there were all these leads us to the news paid at the end, I used to say the thing is that something else that because this all was happening in a very different environment to the one we know today. And the the the majority, many, many people were closet, you know, we're not at work, we're not out to the parents. And we're not out to the landlords. In fact, these three groups of people were what we used to talk about a lot, you know, how do you cope with your landlord had, because you could get thrown out of your flat [00:19:55] if you were gay, or lesbian. [00:19:59] And, you know, appearance was a particularly difficult area. And we you know, your workplace. Pan me was another another difficult area. So so it wasn't it wasn't like today we were people. I mean, there's still there's still prejudice, but people are not quite so nervous about about being you know, it's not it's it's not quite as, as prejudice today, in fact, in fact, fairly so. In fact, I think, and so. So that's the environment that all this was happening it happening at the same time. I mean, up until this point, you never saw the word lesbian, for example, published in the newspaper, they wouldn't publish it, or the telephone book. And all of a sudden, it's it's a newspapers, in our little boxes, it's on the TV, it's on the radio, it's Eve everywhere, they were all along men's ministry, there were tables, for petition for people to sign the petition. So they took the petition door to door knocked on that they ended up to knock on every door in the country to gather signatures for the position that they were going to give them a million signatures on. And so the thing that bothered me very early on was that, because I had I had done my psychiatric training, I was worried about self esteem. And I was worried about the self esteem of our community. And which is where other people and so we decided we had to do things that were going to cheer ourselves up. So at the same time, as the as the aunties were injured, we're organizing their rallies against the bill. We were organizing visibility rallies to cheer ourselves up, you know, getting the top two when's to come down to Wellington, the entertainers and all sorts of people there was a guy that did the most wonderful Norman Jones take off. For example, we had the biggest pastors, we had the biggest pastors conference and the biggest pastors rally and, and things. We had a big rally, we had a big rally in May, and another big rally and their biggest, biggest best this conference was an August and a big rally unconference thing. So, so there was an awful lot. And it happened very suddenly, to a community that really wasn't wasn't prepared and was was very, not quite sure how to handle it. So 1985 was a hugely busy year for you. Yes, it was there. I'll tell you what helped to we add, gay DC was guy in the lesbian radio program. We did lots of stuff on on on those two radio programs. And as well, there was pink triangle was keeping everybody up to date with it. And the first I think the first match that we had on the TV, this is the first match I think we had was in May. But what was amazing about that was that at the same time as this was happening, what's the word contemporaneously? good word, was the possibility of another Springbok tour. And so there were lots of matches on Friday nights against the Springbok tour. So we had all tuned to Friday nights, where one one weekend one Friday, Goodness me. One Friday night, we match against the Springbok to the next Friday night, and we tell everybody, we're having a match next Friday, we rush around with Panthers. So really come back and, and match against the live to support the homosexual law reform bill. So it was a busy time, [00:23:55] it was a busy time. Did you find yourself in the media? A bit? [00:24:00] Yes. And that was something new to me. Because I've [00:24:07] always been the week to the pub. [00:24:12] And had lots of friends. And I'd been around Wellington for years. [00:24:17] So and I didn't perceive myself as at the beginning RTD something at the beginning of that campaign. I did not perceive myself as an activist at the end I did. That was it was a life changing experience for me. But I mean, it was a long campaign that went right through until the following year until you know what, what we're going to be celebrating. And 1986 when the bill was actually passed, [00:24:43] how did you find the media when you were when they were approaching you for coming to getting involved? What How did you find them in terms of the support or otherwise? [00:24:52] I don't know that they approached me personally. [00:24:56] As we had this spokes people, and as Ellison and Bill with the spokespeople for the task force. And I think given that a lot of the being the spokesperson for Shay kept a campaign for that. That was the campaign, the coalition and supporter but I did a lot of media releases, and got ended a lot of letters to the editor and leaders to all sorts of people, leaders to the IRD saying that the Reformed Church wasn't really a it was a it was a political organization disguise and they shouldn't have tax exemption. We've got one left. I thought that was a [00:25:31] good one. And so you you are more the sort of person who is who is churning out the media releases behind the scenes, [00:25:39] drain the treasure of the coalition to support the because we had we had a treasurer, and then he resigned. So I just took that over. And then in the meantime, [00:25:48] during the year did you be involved in these things? Did you find it affected you at work or in your home like your landlord can turn against you. [00:26:00] I had my own home and have them Packer curry here at the time. But I was always rushing down to Wellington. And I was working part time, which was helpful because it gave me a lot of hours working through most of most weeks, I was working three days a week, but sometimes I had to work a full time week. But that was set that enabled me to be as involved as I was. [00:26:24] And just just funny out a little bit more about how the lesbians, the different factions within the lesbians were supporting this or maybe just sitting on the fence and so on. Did you find yourself having great debates with with lesbians within the community? [00:26:41] not personally, that there were a lot of debates happening, but I tell you what, I wasn't politically aware enough to debate the issues. I lead other people, I remember when, when we hit the launch of the coalition, and I was the least being speaker at this launch. So I vote might, you know, my speech note, and I wanted another lesbian to say that they were okay. And I went along to a meeting that was at the lesbian center and Wigan Street to see if I can find somebody to go over my notes and approve them and I will people that oppose looking opposed supporting the boat. But if you are a woman called value see lots of lots of people no Listen to me reconnect. She read it for me, she said to me, I think that'll be fine. [00:27:29] voiceprint very grateful to rose. [00:27:32] So, so 1985 busy year preparing everything and and all that the protests on the other side and dealing with all that, and then moving into 1986 itself and and match. The third reading, I think of the bill with it. Can you recall so the rallies or anything around that sort of time [00:27:57] we did, we had a big rally and the wisdom [00:28:01] street in a internet the street in the Wisley hole. And Malcolm McAllister was really responsible for organizing that he was part of the coalition support of the bill. I think I think the year before was the really intense year in terms of [00:28:20] and terms of matches rallies [00:28:25] cheering ourselves up, going along. And for example, when the bill when the signatures that, you know the petition was presented at Parliament, we all went along the parliament parties, and we were all things stuff. Art continue about that quickly. Because that was that's a funny story. Because there were a whole lot of women from one of these photography we reached chatters got up and gave a speech and said, quite frankly, I don't think that they this, you know, this is our land we are the We Are the people and we've been fenced off. And, and, and Parliament grounds, which is they have no right to say that we can't walk out there. So five of us, she and for four of us, we climbed over the fence and started walking up the and I was in the middle and we walking out we were not supposed to walk and they were all our I have to add that I was dressed up as so I had a character called something a big washing up. I used to go to these rallies for to and and protests and things is and so I was something big was just daughter Hank, who was a butch on this occasion. And I'd taken a tape recorder and a microphone as well. And I was I was tape recording a lot of the proceedings and it tape recorded re speech and I really said because somehow got taped over. But nevermind. Often we walk and I'm walking along and I've got a head and and and and tie and everything and and beg, look, I've been I looked ridiculous. But but it right the police, I resisted the two on that side in the 200 Lyft me walking around Bry to walk the river. And then the end I didn't like it over they because I was with all the entities. So I climb back over the fence [00:30:18] until we get some the big wash here. [00:30:22] Well, she was she was she originated when when the Human Rights Commission a pit down they set up the Human Rights Commission in about 1977. And the first Commissioner pat down he said that he thought there was some groups that should be discriminated against. And guess who was one of those was a National Gay rights Rights Coalition wrote to him and which seat off I hit the gun a few little protests before [00:30:55] we started doing the human rights. [00:30:58] And so Cynthia Vega became Pat and the funniest thing was that she was a parody of a person she wasn't a real person at all. And and I'd gone to how she how she originated I'd gone to a lesbian dancer Cynthia big wash. We used to have dancers that I can think was called up and Elizabeth Street and and crosswise crosswise and so and and Allison suggested to me that why didn't I take something big was along to the Human Rights Commission. So was the middle of the day. So Cynthia big wash was English. And and she wore my aunt's hair that she wanted the Melbourne cap and about 1938 and, and anyway, so off Are we the funny thing was so all these real listings and game in there. And and Mr. Chris was saying was Mr. Chris, because he said Mr. Down he wasn't available. He wasn't he wasn't he there in the office, but he would speak to somebody and and he would speak to me, Cynthia and not to me to Cynthia [00:32:05] was the only person there that wasn't the real person. It was absolutely man he was so freaked out about real nice been some game he [00:32:17] wasn't real. [00:32:18] So Cynthia came back for for the protest and so on to do with that and with the homosexual Law Reform Bill going through. [00:32:27] Yeah, yeah. Cynthia tend to not say for example, Cynthia attended, we went and joined the Salvation Army when because the Salvation Army picked up the petition you say and they they were doing a lot of the door to door work and and so on. Everybody went back and asked for the donations bake and that that for them. Oh, and we had this wonderful protest standards Saturday on and Vivian street each Sunday. We got better at singing the Salvation Army songs and they were and we had one that was a fancy dress that all the Salvation Army kids love. And anyway, they had the South Pacific sort of, I don't know Jim berry thing. festival and Wellington and I had a batch from Courtney place through to through the Michael fantasy into so we've been enjoying I mean, but Linda ravens it wasn't a good at the Salvation Army to bring the Spain along Preston matched. And Cynthia, Cynthia beg Washington matched and in debt. And, and the Salvation Army were quite amused and sort of quite warmly received she received in protest against the thing but they sort of didn't get it and and I think it was an October about October night and if we hit I told you we hit a rally in the grounds of Parliament I actually wrote to the speaker and said could we have in panel and a split speaker wrote back and said no, you can't have a you bet you can bring food and this is this is a funny story because somebody a friend this was the coalition and support of the bill. And somebody had a friend who had a friend who had a tiny tiny flared up and Hill Street and and we we got all the food prepared at the but friend didn't want us to it was getting too close and she didn't want us to have this really. And I I actually was cross we had words but I won't I won't go into that but but but she got the Victoria club was a social club and it was with the Victoria club that we will not celebration that's why it was so difficult. But But anyway, she talked she talked to to the Victoria club people and to ask them to stop us from and because they were they were funding the gay task force that they will the rich gaining. [00:34:55] Troika was on our into by was like about the grain of salt. Yeah. [00:35:01] It was made it was absolutely i mean the lots of times and I loved it. And and I loved all the people but but once you once you start getting involved in politics, you suddenly discovered the people that that are not involved in the politics of the thing. And all that thrilled about your, your becoming a debate D voter you have all the stuff anyway. So we they hit this meeting and everybody had the flu. This was a different time of the flu because it was sometime later that I had the flu when that thing passed. And and and I was too sick or too scared to come to the meeting. And at the end of that there was only me to argue the point and the set about 70 people came from the from the Victoria club. But I'll tell you what, James Hislop, and john Timbo who's no longer with us, they stuck up for me. And they were absolutely marvelous. But there was a guy called Daniel fielding, who, who was, you know, who was really against that? And he was putting, and I didn't like Daniel feeling fielding at all. And, and I thought, you know, he was a writer, well, when it came to doing the celebrate celebration of the bill, that Daniel turned up at there. And he said to me, at the end, he lost a lot of weight. At that stage, he was he was a big guy, when I first meet him, and did we want to do something about HIV AIDS and, and the set of I forget now what it was, but I remember the asked that something to do with with it with the we should have some sort of recognition of, of the problems of HIV AIDS, and I thought we should, and I can't remember what we did, but But anyway, then I got a pink triangle. It was a 1987. And I read an article written by Guess who Daniel fielding and I was beside myself, I had no idea that you know, that he was is it possible? And and I've I felt very I don't know, I just felt very sad, because I remember this question he'd asked me, and I thought you could lead you know, doing that even though you were bad. But back then. And anyway, then it came up for the human rights, though. And we were doing submissions on the human rights bill. And I went as to represent the bill Logan and I represented that gay Task Force. And then Bill and I supported him when he was representing people with AIDS, and we and we stood on either side of of him, while he gave, he gave his submission. And he got so upset when he was giving it about telling the treatment that he'd had by a start. And I ended up with my arms around him and I was crying and he was crying. I don't know where the bill was crying. Anyway, we became absolutely theme friends. As a result, I used to visit a map and Evan main road, Corey. And he became very varied. So we started off as sworn enemies in 1985. and ended up as very, very dear friends and I actually went to his funeral. And it was amazing at his funeral, because because set up in sister spoke and how he'd he'd supported here was our problem. And we actually printed everybody clapped. And after that we clapped. Everybody that spoken it was it was wonderful, he'd have been thrilled. So I just wanted to tell you that about the new [00:38:31] our members, funeral members, people could choose to put either rose petals or liver, but to live in this coffin, [00:38:41] worried about what might be found up and as a tick, [00:38:48] tick during the year of 86. [00:38:54] I love the stories during the year of 86 UG. recall some of the event during that that year in the lead up to the bill going through, I'll tell you what, it was a quite a year then 85. We launched the year with this big [00:39:11] rally at the Wisley Hall. And but after that it was it was much more about media releases and letters to the to two employees. And I was absolutely fled as a secretary of the coalition. And RTD somebody who was a real store just in sarcasm important when I mentioned in peace because Fran Of course from mild introduce she she was the what we call the promoter of the bill. The people that really really support who were office staff, Ruth Dyson, and who he went and worked and friends office, and Marian whose secretary and that'll take truth and mail. mela was a huge support to frame and Judy. Judy kills the first MP to come out publicly and Fran was just so relieved that somebody support [00:40:09] was going to be [00:40:10] voting on a favor and saying, you know, it wasn't just going to be here voting on it. But the other person because Allison and I Winton lobbied because there was very busy all going at making appointments in peace and loving them. We we love a lot with Smith and Catherine O'Regan and Catherine I Reagan was always staunch, she was staunch right through. And in the end, the only two national party in peace that did vote for the bill, we're here in Georgia. But she ran always knew she had Catherine's boat. And then later she introduced a supplementary order paper with the human for the human rights bill in 1993. So she has always been a great supporter of lesbian and gay right? She's a lovely person too. And I like to I mean sleep me because we had several meetings with here and [00:41:06] and then was horrified national MP look at you to be so pleased [00:41:14] to see and but it was it was it was there were a lot of meetings, a lot of writing letters, a lot of a lot of media releases and stuff and it was leading right up to it there was that a lot of worry about the age of consent because we wanted 16 and we knew from what had happened in England the dated age of 21 and it took them decades to get rid of that age of 21 and that's a real betrayal to young gaming coming out and so we were absolutely adamant that it was going to be 16 and windy I think we nearly lost George key is fight because of it but any rate and the I can't remember what it was he he said afterwards you know why he why he he did vote for him the end but he was very picky about the age and the we're a lot of a lot of those old gaming that didn't think it was that it was a good strategy but that we were holding out for 16 because they felt that that was going to lose us the [00:42:25] big because it [00:42:28] even though it was the you know the argument was rational and obviously sensible a lot of people really really couldn't cope with it. This isn't a very different environment today we you know we were seen as either perverted or deviant or just plain bad I think and and it it was hard it was a hard time for the newbies not only that I think the other thing you have to remember this was not a mean p this was all these in peace came from the electorate's so and it was a conscience vote so they were responsible for the boat not the party and and so a lot of employees were really really worried that if they voted for they lose the seat but anyway in the in the dead [00:43:22] so did you go and speak to Muslim peace [00:43:26] no no I only been in lobby Lockwood Smith and thing but but somebody what we actually had a list of the mall and and you know what the position was at the gay Task Force and people you know volunteered to do this one or that one that that they would have all been lobbied and Wellington that was well organized that met Bill Logan organized that the gay Task Force [00:43:53] so do the when the bill he was going through Do you remember that this is the day or the nice that the bill was actually the third reading and what was happening where were you that that evening I was in bed [00:44:07] with a nice gas the flow [00:44:12] and on the funniest thing was that the next morning I was better than feeling a bit better the next morning so I wasn't the when it happened but I've been going and sitting in Parliament through the debate. And and sometimes you know there were only a couple of us the because it was every Wednesday night. But that Wednesday night that it was I think it was on Wednesday night it would have been I got I got this gas the gas the flu and I'm I almost wasn't worth it. I wasn't sure you know, I thought I thought I heard on the radio. Did I hear that but it really happened. And that's how I came to me suck my tape of our race chatters because I taped over it because I thought I'll take the news so I can hear it again, you know after because I kept I really I must have hit a raging temperature I think they knew I rushed into the into the lambda center that we had a gaming head let the lambda syntax and the invoke heart Street and and I had the archives upstairs in the soul building that since been pulled down. So I randomly and Tommy was the and he and he had a table for right through fee for months and months on a table for people to sign leases to Parliament to parliamentarians. And he took them off and delivered them. Absolutely fantastic. And he was in the design. And somebody never forget somebody rang up and said, What will we read? Is everybody on the phone that you know wanted to speak to somebody with somebody from the media? and Tommy said, Well, I think they will probably unburied [00:45:53] this morning that that it was legal. [00:46:00] This gorgeous. There was the next day that you went down to [00:46:03] the first thing the next morning. I can't remember there was some reason that I had to be there. And but but when the bill was actually passed, I was out out of my tree with some awful and fiction, but everybody else was there having a wonderful time and celebration. So probably everybody was then bringing me up and saying we're IU [00:46:24] pop cough cough got terrible cold. [00:46:26] We had everyone be celebrating Where did they go that 99? [00:46:29] No idea. No. [00:46:31] You're out of it. [00:46:32] Yes. Yes. I was in Parker Reiki second be [00:46:36] in So did you get involved in celebrations after that once you came around anyway? Yeah. [00:46:41] We had the town home. Cynthia big was very busy that night. [00:46:49] And as was her daughter hang, it was a butch [00:46:52] Hagen. Cynthia turned up. Oh, [00:46:55] yes. And actually, that was fun. Can I tell you a funny story about that? Because Monty and I were in the same class at Kilburn schooled as each other for for one year. He wasn't saying before, and I was in standard six, I was competent class. Anyway, so and Britt was very involved in seating and helping set up the sound systems that same supervising everything for the celebration of the RTD what you could write a book about organizing the celebration for homosexual or form. It was worse just about worse than walking. [00:47:29] But, but anyway, we we had this wonderful night and [00:47:35] and i was i was the emcee for the cause we had a floor floor show or concert sort of Yeah. And and then we had, you know, big dance afterwards. And all sorts of items for the for the concert. And so first of all, TN Stein would come and be the emcee. And she wore a top hat and tails off. Bunch Eagles suckling. And then for the next item, send the bag wash with can see it. And then the next item centre back washes daughter who was a butch came and so I was constantly just changing my clothes. I didn't actually see any of the concert because I was so busy. And one time, I was getting change. And Linda Evans was helping me. And she's and Britt came he was trying to tell me something about the sound system. And Pardon me. And I Linda said to Britt Britt Turkey is getting change, you know, for me embrace it doesn't care. We've been squatting. [00:48:44] And I always thought that was a glorious line. [00:48:48] That at that party at the town hall, was it like a week later? [00:48:53] It took us quite a while to get us all together. But and we hit speeches brain games speech, and Allison gave a speech and Bill gave a speech. I can't remember who else gave a speech for quite a few. And no, it was it was probably about a month or five, six weeks late later, because we had we had to have a series of meetings to get it together. And nobody agreed about anything at the meetings. I can tell you. [00:49:25] How many people would have turned up [00:49:27] for the meetings? [00:49:28] We know for the for the dancers? [00:49:30] Oh, oh, big, big, big crowd. [00:49:34] I probably better say us and I don't know if it was that many. It's really hard to bed. But you know, the dance floor was I can remember looking down from the stage and the dance floor was full. [00:49:46] Did you have any price to protest? Is there anyone? No, [00:49:49] No, we didn't. No, no, they given up buddy. [00:49:54] So once once it was once gone through the act of person, so on. Yeah. How was it after that with SOS did the community in the Salvation Army for example. After that, I remember going to, [00:50:10] to a pub on Tori straight and they would come in and it was would be having the dude's nights. You know, indeed, Cameron, and people would just turn the backs on them. And that was that would have been around 1999 is what will my feet I mean, I'm not a gay man. So I don't know. I mean, it would have been huge for gaming, because like would be visible now. You know? I mean, it's not that they weren't going to be having sex in public or anything like that. But but it they didn't have to be as close it as it didn't have the ramifications for them. is I mean, it was criminalisation is huge. And of course, we did lose the second part of its summit or somebody wrote a paper recently, and was called quoting somebody else that had written a thesis that said that we know the human rights. Part Two was more important than decriminalization. That is absolutely incorrect. And we always knew that it was very likely that we would use news part two, we were quite prepared for that. But the decriminalize the decriminalization, there was nothing that could have been more important than that. I mean, it was it was a it was a shocking thing. For and for all those guys to be living. But I mean, one guy went to lobby Margaret shields. He was a doctor. And she told me he was and she said, she said they both ended up in tears. He was saying one time he was in the domain and Auckland, and all of a sudden there were police dogs on him. He was running away from these police dogs. And and and he said I thought she said he felt terrible because he burst into tears in the middle of telling his her the story and she and she said it was sold lobbyists into tears. [00:52:03] Because if those still haven't been pardoned, [00:52:06] no, no, there's there's a petition being gathered. And I don't know how far that Scott and I really come in that young guy. That's, that's organized it and I certainly signed it and sent some copies of the petition to friends. But I haven't heard any news of it. [00:52:24] You must have made some strong friendships during from those times. I did. [00:52:28] I did. I became very, very fond of just so I'll tell you something funny. When we with the coalition support the bill, we we had the Opera House. Now this is when we'd only just started and and I wasn't very experienced. Malcolm Malcolm McAllister was more expensive. He was a socialist section then a and a whole lot of rape crisis and refuge women and women against pornography. We are we were got all the the opera house together. And we had backups to collect donations for this coalition and supported the bill that we and we got it all really we hit in sunny days that often to be our patron and she was going to speak brand was speaking George DS smoke, not Georgia. Yeah. What's his name? You know, the, the famous Presbyterian minister that used to be at that on Sunday. And he's on the tears. He spoke our union is from Oakland, Jackson subjects and he came down and spoke. It was absolutely Brent rainy minor Taylor and I read and we used to work together chili Bay at the Air Force Base. And it was always going to be some other guy who couldn't come at the last minute. And so randomly turned up and of course we were around friends that was absolutely fabulous. And he would read the means that we read them alternatively, we thought ultimately, we thought we did rather a good job. And And the funny thing was about that was there was a post up a strike at that time. So these telegrams or sorry, came through through all sorts of devious ways. And they came from all over the world. It was it was really, really exciting. But lot of them hit that people just hit the ring up from Norway or London or cologne or wherever. And tell us what the organization at CD telegram was going to say. [00:54:27] Was the phones was still working, it was just that the the telegrams when when was it [00:54:35] was the 16th of August 1985. I can no six thinks was because of the database of 16. But anyway, we were we this little heavy band of P we'd set up all the Opera House, we had it all okay, and we and you know, undertaken to provide to pay nice, how much further further higher of the Opera House. So then we thought we'll have a cup of coffee while we wait, because there was about three quarters now before everybody would start coming. So off, we went over to the customer. We said, What if nobody comes? [00:55:09] With the good at the anguish? Anybody about 800 people came to there, and it went really, really well. [00:55:18] So, um, for next year, it's the 30th since the bill went through since it came through 30 years, does it? Does it feel like a long time or [00:55:30] How's it feel for you look at I can't believe it's 30 years, like we've had, we've had 10 years and 20 years celebrations of it. And and it seemed, but 30 I cannot believe it was 30 years ago because it was such a dramatic time that that I think that probably so many events just impacted on on. And for me personally, it was such a turning point in my life as well. As I say I Winton just all y'all take it down to the Taban on Saturday night came out and act you know [00:56:07] social mistakes and see what I like to join in the communist civil, I like to join it wasn't rabbinate became and this isn't me. [00:56:14] I said now I'm a feminist. [00:56:18] What do you think you got involved in afterwards? Because you you were now this activists? [00:56:24] Well, I was I was always involved in and lesbian things, but also, we were challenged during the campaign about the treaty, that we should be doing something about the treaty. And so I see that the time or actually I can't do that. And this this, you know, this is overwhelming. But, you know, leading up to 1990 I got involved in groups of lesbians that were that were opposing, celebrating what we were proposing was celebrating a treaty that had not been you know, fulfilled [00:57:01] and we went up to my attorney over here to place and time [00:57:07] and and parties that we went to the Commonwealth Games, of course boost 1990 and then we went up to, to wiping the 180 of us came to a car how [00:57:19] you were there were you wasn't that fan? We were those great big bonfires we hit at night and the singing around the bonfires. It was stunning. [00:57:30] My lesbian Baptism by fire. Really, Jake, [00:57:36] what a wonderful baptism. [00:57:39] So were you involved in right crisis and refuge in those organizations around that time or there were just people you knew [00:57:46] I was I was involved in refuge in Christchurch and then later and then in the 90s in the mid 90s. But now I was I had a lot of friends that were involved that I'd made through the coalition's important the Bill UC, yes mean all sorts of rationalist and humanists maybe we need to meet the they were all very elderly, they were amazing people there and you know, I didn't even know they existed. [00:58:14] This is everyone coming out of the Woodworks to support their support to [00:58:17] support these means engaging it just blew my and RT some of those matches were incredible. They were just stunning. I mean there were there were the awful people that three tomatoes and drop eggs and flour and everything. But and some Lee's been said something about some of the MRT that but I was filled with admiration actually the bravery but and also I'll tell you what, I've been doing messy papers and one of our lecturers was was blind Peter Peter can't remember the name but people know who was sociology lecturer at messy and I was just blown away that when I saw Peter and his guard dog and two of the other sociology lectures from SM Patterson North I don't think awesome Wellington yet the matching in the match the somebody was one of them. It just blow your mind. [00:59:16] Did you know people who were against the bill [00:59:21] oh well well as a matter of fact and he will be somewhat of I will I can't think of anybody straight off the top of my head but I'll tell you what. [00:59:30] The three of us Jane corn and friend rich them they all went to the Wellington politic neck and our boss was Salvation Army. But she chased me down physically tear responded, taking how's it all going? But when we were protesting outside the Saturday, she would have been inside pain. But But I'll tell you what, she was such a sport and she and all she did was worried about us. She worried that we were all right. And when friend was Friend Friend was on TV and 99 one protesting against the Springbok tour and, and being manhandled by the police. And, and Judas was down under Laden. And she she rang Fran up from the Laden's I you will right frame I will. So you know, we we were very fond of her. Judas Christian Christensen, who was her name, and she was a Christian woman. And she she really worried about us through this. [01:00:27] Do you think about the changes that have happened that you've seen that perhaps our lives beings have benefited from that bill having gone through? [01:00:37] I think this means to say we were invisible. And that's why we called Live at least be an action for visibility. And and I was at an event 1922 that the British Parliament tried to include lesbians and they didn't integrate and the criminalization and and one of the MPs argued that it was faithful to keep maintaining their invisibility. Because if people if a woman who you know who about this, that they might be encouraged by it. So it's just best not to not say a word. And you know, and that that was in terms of what they were aiming for was a very good strategy because very hard strategy to fight against. And I believe that more more with the human rights legislation that became law was passed in 19. It became law in 1994. I noticed a dramatic change in the way the media reported on this, suddenly, we were in the media in but not just for negative things, not just like Queensland, then pit by lesbians, positive positive images of lesbians. And to me, that was I've still got in the bottom of one of my boxes, a whole lot of things that I started cutting out, I was so excited. You know, this was in the paper. It's about lesbians. And it's so positive. I mean, Dr. Garner sister died around about that time, I still have the cat in some way. And she was listening to she was locked up in one of the the concentration camp because she was a lesbian. And and it was almost at him that died. And I can't remember but one of the guys during a family died anyway kind of mentioned the sister that was in one of the concentration camps because she was Elizabeth there. In the past, I didn't never put that and I might have put the she was on a concentration camp, but not because she was a lesbian. [01:02:24] So the visibility was a huge thing. [01:02:27] And and the the positive ness of it. Yeah. It was. in in in the 70s. lesbians protested to the post office, they protested to the buses, they protested to the, to the Evening Post, because the Evening Post wouldn't put an advertisement then that sued for lesbian center, you know, that that word lesbian was a No, no. And all those places that the bastards had these advertisements, you know, along the way, that they wouldn't they wouldn't have at least an advertisement for lesbians and and the telephone book that wouldn't change [01:03:04] isn't it? I mean, it seems bizarre, but that's how it was. So we've lived through an interesting period, heavenly

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