Chifley and Greenway electorates vote no in postal survey despite national support for same-sex marriage

People react after watching the marriage vote result announcement at Prince Alfred Park in Sydney this morning. Picture: AAP Image/David Moir
People react after watching the marriage vote result announcement at Prince Alfred Park in Sydney this morning. Picture: AAP Image/David Moir

While the majority of the country has voted in favour of same-sex marriage, the Blacktown area remains opposed to changing the law.

NSW voted most the conservatively out of any state in the postal survey, with 58 per cent of people in favour of changing the law, compared to 62 per cent nationally.

Greenway MP Michelle Rowland said the result showed Australians had “voted overwhelmingly in favour of marriage equality” – yet her electorate remained marginally opposed.

In Greenway, encompassing the eastern half of Blacktown up into Riverstone, 54 per cent of people voted against changing the law.

It was more conservative further west in suburbs such as Mount Druitt – the Chifley electorate recorded a 59 per cent vote opposed to same-sex marriage.

Further south in McMahon, covering parts of Blacktown, Penrith and Parramatta, only 35 per cent of voters were in favour of same-sex marriage.

Chifley MP Husic said he was committed to voting in favour of same-sex marriage despite the opposition in his electorate.

“I respect that people will have different views on this issue however I saw this vote as an important way to maintain Australia’s inclusive tradition,” he said.

Ms Rowland said the result was consistent with what she had heard from voters in her electorate.

She had previously voted against changing the marriage act, but changed her mind after a conversation with one constituent.

“I have thought deeply about this issue and widely canvassed the views of local residents,” Ms Rowland said.

“I acknowledge that many residents have strong views one way or the other for or against marriage equality based on factors such as personal experience, religious beliefs or cultural norms. Each and every one of those people should be respected for their views.

“Personally, a conversation I had with a mother in Seven Hills provided me with an important perspective.  Her son is on active service in the Australian Navy and he wants to marry his partner. This man is putting his life on the line in service to Australia. Who am I, and who is any person, to say that this man should not be entitled to marry the person he loves?

“I will be voting in support of marriage equality when it comes before the Parliament, hopefully before the end of this year.”